The ‘Dream Landing Spot’ for Dalvin Cook

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The Minnesota Vikings have about 10 days before the 2023 NFL Draft, a venue where the club is expected to target a cornerback(s), wide receiver, and maybe even a quarterback.

Meanwhile, longtime running back Dalvin Cook remains in limbo, as Vikings fans aren’t too sure if he’ll return to the club in 2023, be traded, or depart via release.

The ‘Dream Landing Spot’ for Dalvin Cook

The Vikings are reportedly weighing different solutions regarding Cook’s large contract, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “I’m told all options are on the table here and that he could be released closer to the draft if things don’t work out,” Fowler said last week on SportsCenter.

Dream Landing
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Fowler added, “They had talked to at least one team about a trade in the past closer to free agency, so he is certainly a name to watch.”

And at the Vikings pre-draft press conference on April 13th, a reporter asked Vikings general manager Adofo-Mensah about Cook’s future, and he replied, “Conversations are always ongoing with him. We’re trying to be solution-oriented always, trying to put the roster together within our constraints.”

Concerning a general manager speaking about a player under contract, that’s as noncommittal and uncertain as it gets. Adofo-Mensah re-signed Alexander Mattison in March, perhaps signaling an end to the Cook era after six years.

Well, if Cook is traded or released, Bleacher Report has nominated a ‘dream landing spot’ for the 27-year-old: the Philadelphia Eagles.

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BR’s Gary Davenport elaborated, “This is it. The dream landing spot for Cook. And the nightmare landing spot for the rest of the league. The Philadelphia Eagles were fifth in the NFL in rushing a year ago, averaging a robust 147.6 yards per game on the ground. But that run game was cast into uncertainty when lead back Miles Sanders signed with the Carolina Panthers in March.”

Cook’s per-carry production dipped to a career low-point in 2022, but he still featured a handful of giant, game-changing rushing touchdowns.

“There are no shortage of mock drafts predicting the Eagles will draft Bijan Robinson 10th overall this year. But general manager Howie Roseman has never used a top-50 pick on a running back, let alone a top-10 one. Bringing in Cook would give an already loaded Eagles offense another impact player,” Davenport continued.

Draft Homework
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He concluded, “And running behind arguably the best line in the league, Cook could easily lead the NFL in rushing with the Eagles in 2023.”

It is unclear if the Vikings + Cook situation will culminate in a trade or release. If traded, he should fetch a 4th-Rounder, but trade compensation packages for running backs — and everyone else — are difficult to gauge with a draft around the bend. Minnesota has just five picks scheduled for the draft, and an extra 4th-Round selection would come in handy.

Davenport also mentioned the Miami Dolphins, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, Los Angeles Chargers, and Denver Broncos as possible landing spots for the Florida State alumnus.

Cook will turn 28 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,’ and The Doors (the band).

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