Kirk Cousins Gets Some Top 10 Flair

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Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins enters Year 12 in 2023 and his ninth as a full-time starter.

The Washington Commanders drafted Cousins in 2012, spending six seasons in the nation’s capital before trying on the Vikings for size in 2018. Cousins has manned QB1 duties in Minnesota for the last five years.

Kirk Cousins Gets Some Top 10 Flair

And as Cousins undertakes Year No. 12, he’s evidently a Top 10 quarterback, according to CBS Sports.

Gets Some Top 10
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Typically, Cousins shows up anywhere between 12th and 16th on QB Power Ranking lists, but CBS Sports‘ Cody Benjamin balked at such placement, nominating Cousins at No. 10 amid his 2023 Top 10 list this week.

“The inclusion of Cousins on any list of ‘top QBs’ inevitably evokes some scoffing, namely because of the lackluster big-game resume (he’s won just a single postseason appearance in eight years as a full-time starter). He may well be entering his final season with the Vikings, who have mirrored his solid-but-unspectacular resume,” Benjamin wrote about Cousins.

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Scoffing says it politely, as Cousins is generally a total lightning rod for criticism. The 34-year-old accounts for 4,000+ yards passing per season with 30+ touchdowns but has only guided a team to a playoff victory once in his career.

Benjamin added about Cousins in his Top 10, “And yet, in a league full of volatility, he’s been consistently durable and accurate, while proving underrated as a big-play thrower. The athletic upside isn’t there, and if his pocket isn’t cozy, the miscues can snowball. But his on-script efficiency will keep you on the verge of contention every single year.”

What Was Kirk Cousins Doing
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Here’s the full pecking order from Benjamin:

  1. Patrick Mahomes (Chiefs)
  2. Joe Burrow (Bengals)
  3. Jalen Hurts (Eagles)
  4. Josh Allen (Bills)
  5. Justin Herbert (Chargers)
  6. Aaron Rodgers (Jets)
  7. Trevor Lawrence (Jaguars)
  8. Lamar Jackson (Ravens)
  9. Dak Prescott (Cowboys)
  10. Kirk Cousins (Vikings)

Cousins curiously outpaced Matthew Stafford (Rams), Tua Tagovailoa (Dolphins), and Deshaun Watson (Browns) on the Benjamin list.

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The veteran quarterback also enters a ‘contract year’ in 2023. The Vikings front office opted not to extend Cousins beyond this year, marking the first time with the team that he isn’t committed for longer than one season. If nothing changes, Cousins will hit free agency in nine months, although he could be extended next February or March.

Cousins turns 35 in August.

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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