Vikings, Commanders Schedule Michael Penix Meetings; Seahawks In Play For QB?

Not mentioned among the quarterbacks projected to land in the top five, Michael Penix Jr. still profiles as a player who could certainly go off the draft board in Round 1. A number of teams are doing their homework on the recent national championship game starter.

Penix scheduled visits with the Giants, Falcons, Broncos, Raiders and Steelers recently. The Vikings and Commanders can now be added to the Washington alum’s list. Penix worked out for the Vikings recently, according to Bleacher Report’s Jordan Schultz, who adds the Commanders will also host the southpaw QB on a “30” visit. Penix has begun his run of “30” meetings, stopping through Denver on Tuesday and Las Vegas today.

[RELATED: Assessing Michael Penix Jr’s Draft Stock]

The Commanders should not be expected to entertain taking Penix at No. 2 overall, but Dan Quinn did not commit to the team staying in that slot. The new Washington HC only said the Commanders are likely to leave the draft with a quarterback. Still, it would be fairly surprising to see a team that just hired a new GM and HC — and one with an owner who took over less than a year ago — pass on adding an impact QB prospect without needing to trade up.

The Vikings acquiring the Texans’ No. 27 overall pick has brought consistent rumors about the team trading up. Penix, however, could be available with Minnesota’s first pick (No. 11 overall). The Vikings have never chosen a quarterback in the top 10, but since acquiring that second first-rounder, they have been consistently predicted to break that streak. It would not seem Penix would require such a move, but Minnesota is doing due diligence on a passer with an extensive injury history and a strong finish to his college career.

Transferring from Indiana, Penix dominated at Washington and piloted the Huskies to the CFP title game. Working with top-flight WR Rome Odunze, Penix posted back-to-back 4,600-yard passing seasons. Last year, he closed with 36 TD passes and averaged 8.8 yards per attempt. Two torn ACLs and two shoulder injuries have brought understandable concerns, despite Penix’s strong finish. One GM mentioned to the Washington Post’s Jason La Canfora it cleared Penix medically.

While the Penix-Odunze connection proved to be one of the college game’s most dangerous in many years, the QB’s past with Ryan Grubb should also warrant close inspection. The Seahawks, who hired the former Washington OC to call plays, are again being linked to Grubb’s former pupil. Some around the league believe the NFC West team, with Penix having played in Seattle and under Grubb, could in play to land the ex-Pac-12 star at No. 16, La Canfora adds.

Closely tied to Anthony Richardson last year, the Seahawks saw the Colts select the Florida talent one spot before them. Pete Carroll said the Seahawks would have considered drafting Richardson, whom they met with last year, at No. 5. They instead kept Geno Smith as the unquestioned QB1. Thus far in Mike Macdonald‘s first weeks on the job, Smith remains unchallenged for the gig. The 33-year-old QB saw a $12.7MM chunk of his 2024 base salary shift from an injury guarantee to a full guarantee in February, and Macdonald recently named the veteran his starter. But Smith’s three-year, $75MM deal is fairly Seahawks-friendly; the team could escape it easily in 2025. The Grubb-Penix connection should certainly be monitored ahead of the draft. Smith will turn 34 in October.

With J.J. McCarthy looking likely to be drafted closer to the Caleb WilliamsJayden DanielsDrake Maye tier, Penix joins Bo Nix as the passers who could become mid- or late-first-round selections. Both Pac-12 transfers will require significant pre-draft examination, but one team will roll the dice on the Washington product with plans to become a future starter.

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