Bleacher Report Suggests New Destination for Dalvin Cook

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Sep 25, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

Forget the Minnesota Vikings, Miami Dolphins, or Denver Broncos as 2023 teams for Dalvin Cook. Bleacher Report has a different idea, one that would mesh Cook with Aaron Rodgers.

That’s the New York Jets, the apparent benefactor of the latest-and-greatest Cook trade theory.

Bleacher Report Suggests New Destination for Dalvin Cook

Cook has been the subject of trade and release rumors for about two months, with the speculation kicking off at the start of free agency. Some believe the Vikings had secured a deal with the Dolphins that might’ve fallen through because of a failed physical. Perhaps folks will know for sure the details later this summer.

a Dalvin Cook
Dec 9, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) looks on and smiles during the fourth quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Cook was productive in 2022, tabulating 1,173 rushing yards and 10 total touchdowns, but his per-carry and yards-per-expected statistical metrics dipped. He saved face by ripping off a few mammoth touchdown runs, and the Vikings benefitted accordingly, perhaps not winning the games without Cook’s heroism.

But his contract is a different beast. He’s scheduled to carry a $14.1 million cap hit into 2023, and Minnesota re-signed Cook’s teammate, Alexander Mattison, in March for two years and $7 million. It’s unlikely that the Vikings would pay both men — and that’s why Cook has lived in the rumor mill for over eight weeks.

Draft Homework
Dec 17, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) looks on after the game against the Indianapolis Colts at U.S. Bank Stadium. With the win, the Minnesota Vikings clinched the NFC North. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

On the Bleacher Report trade theory involving the Jets, Alex Kay suggested the Vikings could fetch a 4th-Round pick, which the team and its fans would welcome with open arms. Kay wrote, “The New York Jets are an ideal match after acquiring Aaron Rodgers from the Green Bay Packers. The future Hall of Fame quarterback is entering his age-40 season and may not have much tread left on his tires, but Gang Green will be hoping to win at least one Lombardi Trophy before his retirement.”

Suggests New Destination
Aug 25, 2022; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) is interviewed on the sidelines during the second half of a preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports.

“Cook could team with up-and-comer Breece Hall to form one of the best backfield tandems in the league, giving New York the additional firepower it needs to take the heat off Rodgers and wear down defenses. While Cook would be a costly addition and they’d need to clear some cap space, the Jets can’t afford to squander the opportunity they have to win it all and should be more than willing to incur the expense,” Kay surmised.

The deal would work out swimmingly for the Vikings, but it is unclear if the Jets have a need or space for Cook’s contract. New York has high hopes for the aforementioned Hall bouncing back from injury. It also has Zonovan Knight, Michael Carter, plus rookies Israel Abanikanda and Travis Dye on the RB depth chart.

The Vikings are missing a 2024 3rd-Round pick courtesy of last November’s trade for T.J. Hockenson, so grabbing a 4th-Rounder from New York — or anybody — would help ease the pain.

A Cook trade or release is expected to occur after June 1st, if it happens at all.

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,’ and The Doors (the band).

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