Vikings’ Free Agent Has “Buyer Beware” Label

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NFL teams should steer clear.

That’s the message from Bleacher Report regarding Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins, who is scheduled to hit free agency in eight weeks if no extension agreement is reached.

Vikings’ Free Agent Has “Buyer Beware” Label

Cousins has quarterbacked the Vikings for six seasons, and if his representation + the team’s front office meet in the middle financially, the veteran passer will take the reins for a seventh in 2024.

Buyer Beware
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BR‘s Alex Kay published an article this week about five impending free agents for teams to avoid, and Cousins headlined the piece. “Kirk Cousins may be the most talented quarterback available in an extremely limited free agent crop, but teams desperate for a signal-caller should be wary of investing too much into this aging veteran. While Cousins, 36, has put up some respectable numbers on a consistent basis, he is coming off a season-ending Achilles rupture and hasn’t found any true playoff success during his 12-year career,” Kay explained.

Cousins was on pace for 5,000 passing yards, 38 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions before tearing his Achilles in late October at the Green Bay Packers. Minnesota finished 3-6 without him.

Kirk Cousins Confirms
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Kay continued, “Even a full-strength Cousins should give suitors pause due to his severe lack of postseason success. He’s only taken his teams beyond the regular season on four occasions and has won just a single game — and a somewhat controversial victory at that — during those trips. While Cousins might deliver some gaudy numbers and make a Pro Bowl or two at his next stop, it won’t mean much and won’t be worth Spotrac’s estimated value of nearly $40 million annually if he can’t get past the Wild Card round.”

Cousins’ playoff triumph four years ago wasn’t too controversial; the Vikings toppled the New Orleans Saints straight-up on the road in the Wildcard Round. He was instrumental in the win but hasn’t fetched a postseason victory since.

Kirk Cousins Has to
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Whether with the Vikings or elsewhere, Cousins should command $35-$50 million per season via his next contract. Some Vikings fans insist the 35-year-old will accept a “hometown discount,” somewhere in the ballpark for $30-$35 million, but that remains to be seen and feels like best-laid plans.

“Given how strong the 2024 draft class is at this position — there are seven passers ranked within the top-100 on Bleacher Report’s latest big board — it’s hard to imagine many fanbases getting excited adding Cousins as a free agent over selecting one of these talented prospects to man their quarterback spot,” Kay concluded.

Kirk Cousins in the Clutch Is a Positive Shift
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If Cousins does not return to Minnesota, the Atlanta Falcons are considered the odds-on favorite to land his services — the same team that interviewed Bill Belichick on Monday.

Other “buyer beware” free agents labeled by Bleacher Report? Austin Ekeler (RB, Chargers), Mike Evans (WR, Buccaneers), Connor Williams (C, Dolphins), and Chase Young (EDGE, 49ers).

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).

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