Kirk Cousins Linked to 2 Teams via Impending Free Agency

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Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins won’t return in 2023, and the next business item regarding his future will arrive in a matter of weeks.

Cousins is scheduled to hit free agency in March — 12 weeks from now.

Kirk Cousins Linked to 2 Teams via Impending Free Agency

The 35-year-old could re-sign with the Vikings and embark on a seventh campaign; that is very much in play. But Cousins and the Vikings’ brass couldn’t meet in the middle on a contract extension last offseason, so we shall see if a happy medium can be found in 2024.

Meanwhile, ESPN’s Bill Barnwell sideways linked the veteran passer to two teams this week in an article detailing 13 quarterback-needy franchises entering the 2024 offseason. And that’s two clubs in addition to the Vikings.

Arizona Cardinals

It is unclear if the Cardinals’ new leadership regime will retain Kyler Murray. Most NFL pundits would probably say yes on that situation, but Barnwell floated a different theory.

Kirk Cousins Linked to 2
Arizona Cardinals head coach Jonathan Gannon speaks to the press at the Cardinals facility in Tempe on Feb. 22, 2023. © Joe Rondone/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK.

“Offensive coordinator Drew Petzing worked as a positional coach with the Vikings, including serving as the assistant quarterbacks coach for Cousins in 2018,” Barnwell wrote.

Arizona could also explore a rookie quarterback in April. The class will feature Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, Jayden Daniels, Bo Nix, J.J. McCarthy, Quinn Ewers, and Michael Penix Jr, among others. If that draft happened tonight, the Cardinals would choose third.

Is a Better Kirk Coming for Vikings?
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Barnwell added about the Cardinals’ possible quarterback intentions, “Coach Jonathan Gannon was hired from the Eagles, where he saw Gardner Minshew fill in for an injured Jalen Hurts late last season. Even knowing Murray would be out for an extended period of time, Arizona didn’t appear to pursue Minshew as a bridge starter this past offseason.”

This one — Cousins to Cardinals — is a longshot because Arizona will either keep Murray or draft a player like Drake Maye.

Denver Broncos

Russell Wilson runs the show in Denver, but new head coach Sean Payton could cut ties with the expensive passer this offseason. It would hurt the Broncos’ budget for a year or two, but Payton does things his way.

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Insert ties to Cousins, says Barnwell: “General manager George Paton, meanwhile, was the assistant GM with the Vikings when they signed Kirk Cousins.”

Under different management in 2018, Denver was reportedly interested in Cousins, too. The Vikings won the Cousins Sweepstakes, but not before a bidding session involving the Broncos and Jets.

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“It’s difficult to imagine a scenario where the Broncos have the cap space to both shed Wilson’s deal and sign Cousins, but if they want to pursue a Saints-esque cap philosophy, they’ll find a way,” Barnwell added.

The Broncos, too, are probably unlikely to sign Cousins because he’ll demand a large contract involving guaranteed money. Wilson already speaks for that on the Broncos’ current books.

Other teams to monitor if Minnesota doesn’t re-sign Cousins? Atlanta Falcons, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New England Patriots, or Los Angeles Rams (if Matthew Stafford retires).

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 Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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