Did Kirk Cousins’ Cash Dash Give the Vikings a Parting Gift?

When the Minnesota Vikings entered the offseason, they did so with a relative priority to keep their starting veteran quarterback, Kirk Cousins. He was looking for the most certainty and instead opted to move on to Atlanta. His dash for cash may have been a bit sketchy, though, and the Vikings could land a parting gift in exchange.

Did Kirk Cousins’ Cash Dash Give the Vikings a Parting Gift?

There is nothing weirder about free agent negotiating periods than the “legal tampering” nonsense that the NFL allows to continue. However, when the Atlanta Falcons virtually had a massive deal in place with Kirk Cousins before free agency even opened, it seemed a bit fishy. Of course, the Vikings wouldn’t give Cousins the bag again, so it wouldn’t have been matched either way.

kirk cousins
March 13, 2024. Newly signed Atlanta Falcons Quarterback Kirk Cousins sits down with Falcons Digital Producer Taylor Vismor to discuss his signing with the Falcons. Kirk talks about the exciting playmaking roster he is joining and what a move to Atlanta means to him and his family.

Now, though, Mike Florio is reporting that Minnesota may stand to gain from Cousins’ departure to Atlanta, and he has been relatively plugged into the situation all offseason.

The NFL is currently investigating the Atlanta Falcons and whether or not they tampered with Cousins. If it is found that they did, draft pick compensation could be switched around, which would only enhance the Vikings’ chances of landing their future franchise quarterback.

Conventional wisdom suggests that the Vikings will package their 11th and 23rd overall selections to move up in the draft, potentially as high as 2nd or 3rd overall, and grab a quarterback. If they are awarded the 8th overall pick, they could wait for the top-4 signal caller that falls to them or may have to give up less future capital to go get someone like Drake Maye or Jayden Daniels.

Free Agency
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

The Falcons are obviously happy with Cousins’ signing, and he will be their quarterback regardless. However, losing out on draft positioning alters how they supplement the roster with talent, and it will be all for a negotiation that could have taken place within the rules anyway. No one else would pay Cousins that money and his family has roots that tie him to the area anyway.

Atlanta’s move back three spots may be negligible, but it would be a significant come-up for the Vikings.

Leans into Theory
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports.

The Falcons cleaned house on their coaching staff following last season, but general manager Terry Fontenot has been there long enough to hopefully not make silly mistakes. Maybe not.


Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.

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