Purple Rumor Mill: Duke Shelley Steam, Wilf + Kirk, Dalvin Delay

Vikings Will See 7 Old Friends on Bears Roster
Duke Shelley. © Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports.

VikingsTerritory’s Purple Rumor Mill is a two-day chronicle each week. All the week’s rumors are lassoed and plopped in two spots — articles on Saturday and Sunday — for review. Today is the August 13th edition.

Purple Rumor Mill: Duke Shelley Steam, Wilf + Kirk, Dalvin Delay

Remember — rumors are rumors. What you read on weekends in these pieces is what the world is talking about pertaining to the Vikings, not necessarily items that will come to fruition.

Here’s the second batch of the week. Yesterday’s can be read here.

Rumor: Duke Shelley may not make the Raiders active roster and could hence hit free agency.

Duke Shelley Steam
Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

Shelley seemed on track for starting CB duties in Las Vegas five months ago, as the Raiders depth chart at CB was weak, at least to the naked eye. Fast forward to early August with the releases of first unofficial depth charts, and Shelley was buried on Las Vegas’ depth chart. It’s a little strange.

CB1: Marcus Peters
CB2: Nate Hobbs
CB3: Brandon Facyson
CB4: Jakorian Bennett
CB5: Amik Robertson
CB6: Tyler Hall
CB7: Ike Brown
CB8: Duke Shelley
CB9: Sam Webb
CB10: Bryce Cosby
CB11: David Long Sr.
CB12: Azizi Hearn

If this holds, Shelley will be a free agent on August 29th, free to sign with any CB-needy team. One could argue the Vikings are CB-needy.

Rumor: The Vikings ownership is in no hurry to extend Kirk Cousins’ contract.

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Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

Vikings owner Mark Wilf reiterated his feeling on Cousins’ future in Minnesota this week, telling ESPN it’s up to general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell to decide, presumably next offseason.

“We’ll leave that to Kwesi and Coach to work through those discussions. There’s always conversations on that. But our real focus is 100% on 2023 and getting where we need to be, and where I know we can be,” Wilf explained.

This follows an offseason pattern. All members of Vikings leadership, including Cousins personally, have stated 2023 will play out, and the parties will explore an extension, if applicable, next March.

We should consider the topic a done deal and no longer mysterious. They’re in wait-and-see mode. Everybody involved.

Rumor: Dalvin Cook is taking his sweet time to sign a deal with a new team.

Is There a Dalvin
Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports.

Cook is still holding out hope he can be a team’s RB1. The Jets apparently envisioned Cook as an RB2, which checks out because Breece Hall lives on that depth chart.

The former Viking will not find a bellcow job with a playoff-contending team; such teams have their roster plans figured out. That’s what good teams do, figure out roster construction before August.

In the end, Cook will probably fetch about $5 million per season and nestle into a hybrid RB1-RB2 role with the Jets, Dolphins, Patriots, Cowboys, or Broncos.


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 Viking obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

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