Frontrunner to Land Russell Wilson? The Minnesota Vikings.

Fans Should Sneer
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports.

Kirk Cousins? A rookie quarterback from the 2024 NFL Draft?

Maybe. But sportsbooks believe a different man will join the Minnesota Vikings as QB1 in 2024 — Russell Wilson.

Frontrunner to Land Russell Wilson? The Minnesota Vikings.

Denver Broncos head coach Sean Payton benched Wilson this week in favor of veteran passer Jarrett Stidham, and some reports indicate that’s a wrap for Wilson in Colorado. The Athletic‘s Dianna Russini tweeted Wednesday, “Russell Wilson is expecting to be cut by the Denver Broncos in March, per league sources. For almost two months, the quarterback has been starting knowing the organization was most likely going to move on him from after this season.”

Frontrunner to Land Russell Wilson? The Minnesota Vikings.
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And according to BetOnline.ag, the Vikings are the odds-on favorite to land Wilson when the time comes, likely in two to three months. These are the living betting odds for Wilson’s services:

  • Minnesota Vikings: 5/1
  • New England Patriots: 6/1
  • Washington Commanders: 7/1
  • Las Vegas Raiders: 7/1
  • Chicago Bears: 8/1
  • Atlanta Falcons: 8/1
  • New York Giants: 8/1
  • Pittsburgh Steelers: 8/1
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 10/1
  • Arizona Cardinals: 10/1
  • New Orleans Saints: 11/1
  • Seattle Seahawks: 33/1

It is unclear where Wilson would fit among existing Vikings quarterbacks under contract, Jaren Hall and Nick Mullens. Minnesota must also decide on Kirk Cousins’ future, as the injured 35-year-old is scheduled to hit free agency in about 2.5 months.

Too, because the Vikings employ a somewhat new leadership regime in Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Kevin O’Connell, the duo is expected to draft a quarterback with high-round capital before too long.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

All those factors complicate Wilson-to-Minnesota, but sportsbooks evidently don’t care as of December 28th. One item is certain: Wilson’s next team can sign him for cheap in a few months because his Denver payday is ongoing. In fact, for some team, he’d be the perfect patchover quarterback to a rookie.

Sean Payton said about the choice to bench Wilson, “I understand all the speculation and everything that surrounds a move like that, and I can tell you, look, we’re desperately trying to win. Sure, in our game today, there are economics and all those other things, but the number one push behind all of this — and it’s a decision I’m making — is to get a spark offensively. Obviously, it’s difficult, and all of us feel like, ‘Man, we didn’t do well enough.'”

Russell Wilson
Russell Wilson

“In regards to the future, we haven’t had a sitdown. I’m sure we will. Greg [Penner] and I and George [Paton], we speak frequently, but this is about now. It’s about trying to get our eighth win, and we’ll go from there,” Payton added.

In 2023, before the bench assignment, Wilson ranked 12th leaguewide per EPA+CPOE. For context, Kirk Cousins ranks fifth. Last year, Wilson placed 27th via the same metric. He’s accounted for 26-TD, 8-INT split through Week 16.

What Difference Does Dalvin Tomlinson Make?
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

While anything is possible as the Vikings enter the 2024 offseason, retaining Cousins, drafting a 1st-Round quarterback — or both — feel like a more predictable outcome than signing Wilson.

But don’t tell that to Vegas.


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 OverTheCap.com.

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