New Trade Destination for Kirk Cousins Hits Social Media

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Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins speaks before a joint practice with the Tennessee Titans in Eagan, Minn., Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023. © Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA TODAY NETWORK.

It hasn’t been given sturdy legs by too many credible NFL media outlets yet, but some folks have decided on a next trade destination for Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins.

New Trade Destination for Kirk Cousins Hits Social Media

That’s the Atlanta Falcons, a 3-2 club through five weeks that is evidently a productive quarterback away from The Promised Land.

Kirk Cousins Hits Social
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports.

The Falcons curiously don’t utilize their prominent pass-catching options in Kyle Pitts and Drake London like a normal NFL offense — fantasy football managers can attest — but adding Cousins would apparently be the special sauce.

For now, Atlanta employs Desmond Ridder at QB1, who ranks 30th of 33 qualifying quarterbacks per EPA+CPOE. Ridder is a statistical bedfellow with passers like Mac Jones, Bryce Young, and Kenny Pickett through five games, all underperformers.

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From the moment the Vikings unexpectedly lost their Week 1 game to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers fell injured four plays into the regular season, Cousins has been plopped at the epicenter of the NFL’s trade rumor mill. First, it was the Jets who’d theoretically add Cousins, but New York has experienced glimpses of competence from Zach Wilson — and probably doesn’t want to sink more trade capital into old quarterbacks.

Then, the New England Patriots have been floated as a Cousins landing spot, although that transaction is merely speculation from sources like Bleacher Report.

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The Cousins-to-Atlanta theories are new and out there, though, and likely won’t cease until the NFL’s trade deadline on Halloween.

Minnesota owns a 1-4 record, with a date at Soldier Field on the itinerary next weekend, the San Francisco 49ers after that, and Lambeau Field in Week 8. The Vikings basically have three games left to determine if Cousins should remain at QB1 or if a trade is wiser — if they’re even considering trading him in the first place.

Cousins is the NFL’s 10th-best passer through five weeks, per EPA+CPOE, akin to Jalen Hurts (ranked ninth) and Dak Prescott (11th). Former NFLers like Rob Gronkowski and Kyle Rudolph have recommended the Vikings exploration of a Cousins trade if the season isn’t salvaged, and a 1-4 start fits the argument.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports.

ESPN entered the Cousins trade forum Monday, too, immediately after the club lost to the Chiefs, claiming a Cousins swap to a new team would not be an overreaction by trade theorists or the Vikings front office.

“He could help someone, and the sooner he gets to the Jets or Falcons or whoever needs a real quarterback to maximize an otherwise strong roster, the better. He’d likely have to learn a new offense on the fly. Now, Cousins has a no-trade clause, and he and his family like it in Minnesota. This is an obstacle, and possibly one that couldn’t be overcome. But if Cousins is not in the Vikings’ 2024 plans, and they went to him and told him that and asked if he wanted them to deal him to a contender, you’d think he’d at least have to consider it,” ESPN’s Kevin Seifert wrote about Cousins’ potential to boost a playoff-contending team.

Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson also hit injured reserve on Tuesday morning, further igniting all Cousins-themed trade theories as folks believe Minnesota is more likely to “mail it in” for 2023 with Jefferson out for at least four games.

Cousins is scheduled for free agency in five months and can sign anywhere in the NFL if the Vikings don’t welcome him back.

The Falcons offense ranks 21st in the NFL per DVOA with Ridder in charge. The Vikings rank 12th via the same metric.

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