Kirk Cousins Weighs in about Future with Vikings

Vikings Fans Remember
Kirk Cousins at the NFL's 2023 Honors Ceremony where his play with Justin Jefferson took home 'Best Moment.'

For the first time since early 2018, the Minnesota Vikings have a blank canvas to do whatever their heart desires at QB1 the following season.

General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah has not extended current quarterback Kirk Cousins’ contract this offseason, tentatively scheduling the 34-year-old for free agency in 10 months.

Kirk Cousins Weighs in about Future with Vikings

But if the decision were solely up to Cousins, well, he wouldn’t leave.

Want to Leave
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Reporters asked the Vikings signal-caller Wednesday, “You are now a year from free agency, a year away from having options — does that change anything there at all?”

With a grin, Cousins responded, “No, I want to be in Minnesota. That’s kind of a no-brainer. So, hopefully, you know, we can earn the right to do that.”

Weighs in about Future
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Interestingly, Cousins was asked the same question 13 months ago — reporters love asking him this question, evidently — and he replied then eerily similar to now, “My mindset was really to be a Viking. I would like to retire as a Viking, and so I would like to play my way into that if you will. I know I’ve got to earn the right to do that.”

Over the last two months, a cloud of draft smoke suggested that the Vikings could make a splash in Round 1 of the 2023 NFL Draft by trading up for C.J. Stroud or Anthony Richardson, staying put for Will Levis at pick No. 23, or auditioning Tennessee Hendon Hooker from Round 2. Minnesota chose none of those options, instead taking a longshot flyer on a 5th-Round passer named Jaren Hall, who will be 26 or 27 years old by the time the Vikings turn to him for QB1 duty.

ESPN Updates Vikings
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Additionally, after the draft, Adofo-Mensah didn’t sound like a man chomping at the bit to end the Cousins era anytime soon. The young executive told reporters last Saturday, “Kirk doesn’t need to do show anything to me. Kirk has played football at a high level before I got to the Minnesota Vikings. Last year, we won 13 games. I don’t know what he would need to prove to me or anybody else.”

“Sometimes you come to a place [in contract talks] where you decide, ‘Hey, let’s talk later. This is a solution for now.’ That’s all that’s happened,” Adofo-Mensah continued.

Since joining the Vikings five years ago, Cousins ranks fourth in the NFL in touchdown passes and fifth in passing yards. His team owns the league’s 12th-best record on his watch but just one playoff triumph.

Adofo-Mensah concluded, “We like where we are at the quarterback position, but every option is open to us going forward. We’re just really excited about Kirk this year. The weapons we’ve added in free agency, the weapons we added in the draft, and we’ll see what happens after that.”

Kirk Cousins Riddle
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Overall, on paper in May, Cousins’ time with the Vikings is slated for expiration next March. But the team’s head boss doesn’t sound disillusioned — at all — with his quarterback, nor does the quarterback want to leave.

And Cousins has repeatedly stated that he wants to retire in Minnesota.

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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