Vikings Forecasted to Take “Major Fall” in 2024

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An NFL team can’t get too much worse than 7-10.

Vikings Forecasted to Take “Major Fall” in 2024

But that’s the prediction from CBS Sports this week, as it identified five teams leaguewide that will dip per wins and losses in 2024. Unfortunately for the Minnesota Vikings’ sake, the purple team made the list.

Major Fall
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Based on theoretical life without Kirk Cousins, who is scheduled to hit the open free-agent market in March, CBS Sports’ Jeff Kerr painted a grim portrait of the 2024 Vikings. The Vikings’ leadership, general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell, have said for months they’d like Cousins back in 2024, but as always with the 35-year-old, money is the hinge. Minnesota may want a Cousins reunion at a somewhat affordable pricetag, whereas he can probably fetch $40-$45 million on the open market.

Kerr explained why the Vikings could “take a major fall” on Wednesday, “The Vikings were primed to take a fall from their 13-4 record in 2022, and they did, experiencing a six-game drop off in 2023. Minnesota has excellent pass-catching talent with Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison, but T.J. Hockenson may be out for the majority of 2024 recovering from ACL and MCL surgery. Then there’s Kirk Cousins, who is a free agent and the glue to this whole season. Do the Vikings want to pay more than $40 million to a 35-year-old quarterback who has won one playoff game in his six seasons with the team?”

Minnesota Vikings Head Coach Kevin O’Connell addressed the media from the TCO Performance Center on Wednesday, December 6th, 2023. The Vikings had a quarterback debate off the bye week in 2023, and O’Connell announced incumbent starter Joshua Dobbs would play in Week 14 at the Las Vegas Raiders.

A performance dip at quarterback would likely accompany life sans Cousins, but if the hypothetical newcomer passer trended upward heading into 2025, few Vikings fans would care.

“Or is it time to move on and find the next franchise quarterback in the draft? At least the Vikings have Brian Flores to lead the defense, as they improved from 27th in points allowed per possession in 2022 to 18th in 2023. Without Cousins in an NFC North with the Detroit Lions, along with the rising Green Bay Packers and improving Chicago Bears, this year could be a rough one for the Vikings,” Kerr concluded about the Vikings’ apparent impending regression.

Top Storylines for 2nd
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Minnesota will pick 11th on draft night, and the club can use the capital on a new quarterback or impact defensive player. Perhaps the decision on Cousins’ future beforehand will further illustrate the primary roster need.

Some fear the other NFC North combatants, too. Detroit just reached the NFC Championship and probably won’t fall off a cliff in 2024. The Green Bay Packers turned heads, quarterback Jordan Love in particular, down the stretch of 2023. And the Chicago Bears own the 1st overall pick in April’s draft, a momentous chance to swing for the fences and draft Caleb Williams of USC.

Do Vikings Start
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The Vikings may need a productive and efficient offseason to keep pace.

The other teams mentioned by Kerr on tap to “take a major fall?” The Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints, and New York Giants.

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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