Wacky Proposal Suggests Zach Wilson to Vikings

Zach Wilson Whispers
Jan 9, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports.

Ready to wind down the Kirk Cousins era in Minnesota and prepare for the future?

How about Zach Wilson instead?

Wacky Proposal Suggests Zach Wilson to Vikings

That’s the latest and greatest theory from NFL-themed media, as the Minnesota Vikings live in the NFC North’s basement at 1-4 while the team’s best player, Justin Jefferson, will miss at least a month with a hamstring injury.

Accordingly, Kirk Cousins trade rumors have reached a conflagrant glow, with folks speculating Minnesota could ship him to a team like the Atlanta Falcons or New York Jets for draft picks. Of course, Cousins owns a no-trade clause in his contract and can say “no” to any trade riffraff.

But that didn’t deter The Bill Simmons Podcast from getting funky and theorizing Cousins to the Jets and Wilson to the Vikings.

Proposal Suggests Zach
Sep 17, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA; New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) hands off to running back Dalvin Cook (33) in the third quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports.

The Ringer’s Benjamin Solak joined Bill Simmons’ show this week and spitballed about the Cousins trade sweepstakes, “Kirk’s in the last year of his deal, and I would be legitimately stunned if we see him in a Viking uniform in 2024. This team desperately needs to infuse with youth and start a new era, and I think that you’re gonna see trade-deadline interest in Cousins.”

The Vikings have about 18% odds to reach the postseason at the moment, according to sportsbooks. The season may already be toast.

Oct 8, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) passes against the Kansas City Chiefs in the second quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

“Accordingly, I could see them walking into the season playing the backup the rest of the way and really, really, really trying to sink this thing. So if you’re Minnesota, maybe you get Zach Wilson back?” Solak continued with the Cousins-to-Jets idea.

Wilson has severely underwhelmed in three seasons since joining the Jets as the 2nd overall pick from the 2021 NFL Draft. He ranks 27th of 32 qualifying quarterbacks through Week 5 via EPA+CPOE, bedfellows with Daniel Jones and Mac Jones.

Dec 18, 2022; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) drops back to pass as offensive tackle George Fant (76) blocks during the first quarter against the Detroit Lions at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports.

Solak concluded, “Oh? A little new home, new Zach? That I don’t mind. I feel like the Jets will want to get Zach Wilson out because it’ll just get rid of him, right? You kind of rid yourself of that polarizing figure.”

The idea — evidently — is that Wilson could thrive eventually with tutelage from Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell, who played quarterback in the NFL about a decade ago. Otherwise, adding Wilson could help Minnesota lose more games in 2023 because he’d be an immediate and significant downgrade from Cousins.

Sep 14, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws for a touchdown against the Philadelphia Eagles during the third quarter at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports.

Wilson-to-Vikings is unlikely to materialize for one reason. If the Vikings trade Cousins in the next three weeks — it’s unclear if they’re interested in that at all — they’ll probably demand draft capital and use it to find a promising new quarterback in the 2024 NFL Draft. Banking on Wilson turning into a franchise quarterback just because he flew across the country doesn’t sound like a sturdy plan for life after Cousins.

And Minnesota won’t want a half-measured solution when it turns the page on the Cousins experiment.

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).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.