Sansevere: Chuck Foreman Wouldn’t Get into a Huddle with Kirk Cousins
If Vikings legend Chuck Foreman was playing today, he would refuse to play with Kirk Cousins.
It’s nothing professional. It’s personal.
Foreman, who is vaccinated, won’t get close up with Cousins, who is not. And it’s not just Cousins. Foreman has an issue with all players, Vikings or otherwise, who have chosen not to be vaccinated against COVID 19.
“In my opinion, unvaccinated players are being unreasonable and selfish,” Foreman told the St. Paul Pioneer Press in an interview conducted by me.
“It’s my opinion, but I wouldn’t get in the huddle with Cousins. The guy’s not vaccinated. So, I think it would be a problem for me, personally.”
Foreman, who last played in the NFL in 1980 after helping lift the Vikings to three Super Bowls, has been impressed with the offseason upgrades made by coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman. It’s the unreasonable and selfish team members such as Cousins, Adam Thielen, and safety Harrison Smith that he believes will lead to an unsuccessful season.
“I’m sticking with my prediction of a 6-11 season for the Vikings,” Foreman told the Pioneer Press. “The Vikings certainly have the talent to have a winning season. However, I think with what’s going on with COVID and most of the guys in the leadership roles not taking the vaccine, I don’t know how you manage that.
“I think there will be some issues, especially if somebody gets infected and throws off the whole team. Then guys start missing paychecks. It’s going to create some problems in the locker room.”
Among those problems, Foreman told the newspaper, is that teams can be forced to forfeit games due to unvaccinated players spreading COVID.
“I really don’t know if a team can recover from a forfeit,” Foreman said. “If I’ve been vaccinated and we’ve got guys that haven’t been and then we’ve got to forfeit, I’m losing a big check and they are big checks now. They aren’t like when I played; maybe a game check was $2,500 bucks. Now I’m talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars that most guys are making per game. And, so that’s going to have an effect on the team and the outcome of the season. I really believe that.”
Foreman said he understands that many people object to being vaccinated and that it some work environments it wouldn’t be an issue. But not in football, not in the NFL.
“I mean, I certainly have no problem with them in their own personal decisions,” he said. “I understand that part of it, but this is a game that requires everybody to be on board. You can’t have three, four or five different people going in different directions. I just don’t see how it can work, especially when there are guys (unvaccinated) in the leadership roles. If you’re not on board, then the best thing for you to do is step away and let the team move forward without those types of problems. Potential problems.”
To illustrate his issue with getting into a huddle with Cousins, Foreman recalled when he played and would be tackled.
“I can remember getting tackled and guys are on top of me. And when they would breathe, I could tell who had what type of alcohol, like, “Man, what were you drinking last night?” I’m serious. You can smell it. This is how hard they’re breathing,” Foreman said.
In other words, after a play, opponents and teammates still are breathing hard and he is concerned an infected player potentially could spread COVID in the huddle.
“I just want to reemphasize: Hey, whatever you do, I have no problem with that. But you can’t expect me to get in the huddle with you, especially if I’m vaccinated and I’m thinking a certain way,” Foreman said.
“This is going to be (Mike) Zimmer’s toughest coaching job. Now, he’s got to worry if one of the guys is going to be exposing themselves to people, or whether their family has been exposed to somebody. Then they’ve got to come to practice. There’s so many different things that aren’t the norm. So, there are problems. That’s not really a part of the normal part of the game.”
“If you’re not vaccinated, then you’ve got a bigger chance of going (out of games sick). I’m just saying that now, besides worrying about the team you’re going to play against, you’ve got to worry about your teammates and what they’re going to do to stay healthy and keep you from being unhealthy. It’s a difficult situation. And especially in this kind of game, it can’t work.”
(Bob Sansevere hosts the daily podcast “The BS Show” that also is broadcast on radio stations in Duluth (WDSM), Hibbing (WNMT), St. Cloud (WBHR) and Worthington (the RadioWorks Network). He also co-hosts the weekly JimBob Sports Jamboree with Vikings legend Chuck Foreman and Fox 9’s Jim Rich; that show can be heard on about a dozen radio stations across Minnesota. And he will be returning to the KQ Morning Show, where he spent more than 30 years, to give weekly Vikings updates.)