The 3 Vikings in Player-Voted ‘NFL Top 100’

Kirk Cousins Beating on the Door of NFL History for 1 Clutch Stat
Aug 27, 2022; Denver, Colorado, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports.

The NFL revealed the final 20 members of its annual ‘NFL Top 100‘ on Sunday, presented by NFL Network.

Before 2022, Minnesota usually had more representation, anywhere in the neighborhood of four to five players. But for this edition, it’s just three, as the Vikings hope to fix a two-years-long bout with losing football.

These are the Vikings players from the NFL Top 100 of 2022.

#99. Kirk Cousins

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Jan 23, 2020; Kissimmee, Florida, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. © Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Cousins barely cracked the list this year, slipping in at No. 99. NFL players consider him a lesser talented quarterback than Derek Carr and Mac Jones.

But at least Cousins returned to the list. He was given the year off by players in 2021. This is Cousins’ history inside the Top 100:

2016 = 85th
2017 = 70th
2018 = 94th
2019 = 78th
2020 = 58th
2021 = Unranked
2022 = 99th

Cousins can climb the Top 100 with a fancy year involving first-year, offense-first Kevin O’Connell. The Rams propelled Matthew Stafford to perhaps the Hall of Fame — with O’Connell as the offensive coordinator. The Vikings want O’Connell to do for Cousins what he and his friends did for Stafford.

#31. Dalvin Cook

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Dalvin Cook

Coral Smith from NFL Network said about the Vikings running back on the Top 100 pecking order, “Cook collected his third-straight year of 1,100+ yards rushing, the longest active streak in the league, and made the Pro Bowl for the third time.”

Cook also ranks second in yards from scrimmage since the start of 2019 and third in touchdowns in the same timeframe. The man is ultra-productive. Here’s his Top 100 history, determined by players:

2017 = Unranked
2018 = Unranked
2019 = Unranked
2020 = 21st
2021 = 20th
2022 = 31st

In 2022, Cook could be used more as a pass-catcher, enhancing his output as a wide receiver. The Florida State alumnus proved in 2019 that he could catch the football — 53 receptions in that season — so the aforementioned O’Connell may lean into that talent.

#17. Justin Jefferson

Jun 7, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Jefferson was the 53rd-best NFLer last year, per players, but has now graduated to the Top 20. Players classified Jefferson as the No. 4 WR in the world, behind Davante Adams, Cooper Kupp, and Tyreek Hill.

In his first two seasons, the LSU alumnus has accrued the most receiving yards (3,016) ever by a player through his first two seasons. Incidentally, Jefferson also leads the league in receiving yards in the last two seasons.

He’s simply a machine.

Plus, Jefferson has created havoc from the confines of a “run-first” offense authored by Mike Zimmer. Imagine his ceiling in a pass-happy system.


Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).


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