Questions Answered: Vikings Week 1 Opponent, Cousins’ Mulligan, Sam Darnold

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The following questions are about current Minnesota Vikings topics, answered by VikingsTerritory. Today is the May 15th edition, addressed in a from-the-hip fashion. If you have questions, please email them to [email protected].

Questions Answered: Vikings Week 1 Opponent, Cousins’ Mulligan, Sam Darnold

Also, please note: These are opinion-based responses. Some answers will be incorrect from time to time. But we’ll try to keep that to a minimum.

Week 1
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Q: What are your thoughts on the Vikings on the road to start the season at the New York Giants?

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports.

Answer: It’s somehow a must-win.

This is the first half of Minnesota’s schedule:

  • Week 1 — at New York Giants
  • Week 2 — vs. San Francisco 49ers
  • Week 3 — vs. Houston Texans
  • Week 4 — at Green Bay Packers
  • Week 5 — vs. New York Jets (London)
  • Week 6 — Bye
  • Week 7 — vs. Detroit Lions
  • Week 8 — at Los Angeles Rams (TNF)

If the purple team doesn’t beat New York in Week 1, well, it will be a long season. The next six games are brutal.

Q: Do you think Kirk Cousins would stay in Minnesota if he could do it all over again?

kirk cousins
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports.

Answer: Yes, probably.

Every step of the way for Cousins and the Falcons since signing the contract in March has been a fiasco. First, the Falcons allegedly tampered to obtain Cousins, which will probably result is some semblance of a stripped draft pick. Then, Atlanta drafted Cousins’ replacement in Michael Penix Jr. — and didn’t tell him about the plan until minutes prior.

When asked if he’d still choose the Falcons if he’d known they’d pick Penix Jr. in the draft, Cousins replied on a podcast this week: “I don’t really deal in hypotheticals. We could go down that path for a long time in a lot of ways. It just doesn’t do us any good. I’m excited for this opportunity that I have. I think it’s a real privilege to be the quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons and I’m trying to make good on the opportunity given me with the way I work each day and the way we play this fall.”

Sounds like a man who didn’t want to lie.

Q: Will Sam Darnold have a Baker Mayfield-like season from 2023?

Vikings QB
Robert Edwards-USA TODAY Sports.

A: That’s probably a little far-fetched.

Mayfield basically produced a Kirk Cousins statline in 2023, and Darnold has never done that before — or anything close to it. However, Darnold lives in a wonderful system to succeed, outfitted with weaponry like Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison, T.J. Hockenson, and Aaron Jones.

We believe he’ll be good enough to move Minnesota toward a 7-10 or 8-9 record, assuming Darnold plays the whole season. At some point, the baton will be handed to J.J. McCarthy.


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 MIN 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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