Did Kirk Cousins Get His Wish?

Kirk Cousins
Sep 13, 2020; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) stands at the line of scrimmage before the snap in the second half against the Green Bay Packers at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier in the offseason, Kirk Cousins was a guest on the Pat McAfee show.

Their interview covered a variety of topics. One part that jumped out to me rested in the QB1 admitting that he approached the Vikings’ new leadership group with suggestions for what he thinks needs to be done to improve. Take a look at how Cousins worded it:

You know, I think they’re open to input. I don’t even know that I waited to ask for if they wanted input. I just kinda shared it. And I kinda prefaced it with, ‘You can do what you want with this, but here’s my take on where we’re at. Not only on the roster, but as an organization’ […] Honestly, once I say my piece and share it, then it’s hey, you guys are in big roles and you’re paid to do that job, and you gotta go do it.

Cousins followed up these comments by saying that he wants his leadership to have more “information.” They can then decide to what to do with that info.

McAfee then made a joke about Kwesi Adofo-Mensah just getting into his new role before getting a text about ways to improve. “Yeah, honestly, what you just described,” Cousins explained, “is eerily similar to what happened. It was like, ‘Nice to meet you, we need to win. Here’s my thoughts on how to do that.'”

Free agency (for the most part) and the draft are now behind us. Did Cousins get the help he was looking for from his new management team?

It’s impossible to know. It is notable, though, that very little has been done to significantly rework the offense. The personnel looks almost entirely the same, so the hope is that Kevin O’Connell really improves the play calling.

Indeed, the most significant changes have come on the defense. Retaining Danielle Hunter was no guarantee; signing Za’Darius Smith was brilliant. Jordan Hicks, Harrison Phillips, and possibly Chandon Sullivan will end up being strong players. In the draft, 5 of the opening 6 picks went to the defense, with first-round safety Lewis Cine being the most notable.

Perhaps Kirk Cousins asked for continuity. Maybe some improved talent along the defense and scheme adjustments are enough to get the team in a good spot. It’s fair to wonder, though, how much of an impact Cousins’ initial suggestions made. If the hope was for really different personnel on offense, then that didn’t occur.

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