NFL Rookie Minicamps: Biggest Winners and Losers Feature Quinyon Mitchell, Drake Maye

    Rookie minicamps across the NFL came with scrutiny and star power. Who were the winners and losers, including Caleb Williams and Drake Maye?

    The first taste of the NFL for the 2024 rookies just took place.

    Rather than wait until July/August training camp, every year, each franchise uses May to start their early evaluations of their rookie class. For some first-year players, they’ve left their coaches and personnel already in awe of their talents. Others, however, have “a lot to work on,” as one first-year head coach said.

    Here’s a list of winners and losers from rookie minicamp, starting with the former.

    Biggest Winners of 2024 NFL Rookie Minicamps

    Caleb Williams

    It didn’t take long for Caleb Williams to be named the Chicago Bears‘ starting quarterback, even if it has been widely expected since he was the presumed No. 1 overall pick.

    Regardless, it’s relatively rare for NFL head coaches to immediately announce a rookie as the official starting quarterback. But Williams doesn’t have to worry about competition for QB1 ahead of organized team activities (OTAs) and training camp.

    Here is a first look at the Williams-to-Rome Odunze connection, one that we’ll be seeing on Sundays for years to come.

    Jayden Daniels and the Commanders’ Rookie Class

    2023 Heisman winner Jayden Daniels is already the most-watched rookie in D.C.

    However, reports are the No. 2 overall pick wasn’t the only impressive newcomer during rookie camp as Luke McCaffrey and Ben Sinnott have impressed alongside the LSU star.

    Per Commanders team reporter Zach Selby, Daniels looked impressive in calmly surveying his options before delivering quick strikes to his wideouts during 7-on-7 drills.

    McCaffrey snatched three of those passes while impressing with his route running, footwork, and hands. Sinnott, meanwhile, has showcased strong body control and hip bend during his early receptions.

    Quinyon Mitchell

    It didn’t take long for Quinyon Mitchell to make a strong impression on the Philadelphia Eagles‘ coaching staff.

    “You saw the burst and quickness that we saw on tape of why we drafted him in the first round,” said head coach Nick Sirianni about Mitchell after his first practice. “Made a couple of nice plays on the ball today out there with some 7-on-7 speed.”

    Mitchell appears to be on the fast track to start at cornerback opposite long-time veteran Darius Slay.

    Biggest Losers of 2024 NFL Rookie Minicamps

    J.J. McCarthy

    Unfortunately for the national title winner from Michigan and projected starter for the Minnesota Vikings, “inaccurate” was one word used to describe J.J. McCarthy‘s early camp performances.

    One clip surfaced of the first-rounder throwing behind his target despite the attempt ending in a catch.

    Still, fans took to social media to say that type of pass needs to sail outside more from McCarthy for fear of interceptions by defensive starters.

    Drake Maye

    The New England Patriots drafted Drake Maye to become the new face of the franchise after the failed Mac Jones first-round selection of 2021. Head coach Jerod Mayo, however, was brutally honest with his assessment of Maye thus far.

    Mayo, though, is confident Maye will pick things up the more he’s inside the Patriots’ facility.

    “But I have no doubt that he will put the time in. He was here all night trying to get on the same page as everyone else,” Mayo said.

    Still, Maye is expected to perform immediately, especially for a franchise yearning to see stellar quarterback play after playing Jones and watching Tom Brady reel in six Super Bowl titles.

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