Dalvin Cook Has a Message for the NFL

Dalvin Cook Trade
Jul 29, 2022; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) looks on during training camp at US Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

For the majority of his six seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, Dalvin Cook was one of the best running backs in the NFL.

However, Cook was released by the team last offseason, and despite quickly landing a new job with the New York Jets, he never garnered a consistent role with his new team. Fast forward to 2024, and Cook is on the free agency market yet again and trying to prove that there is still a role for him in the league.

Dalvin Cook Has a Message for the NFL

The Vikings Could Be Shaking Things Up in Their RB Room
Jan 15, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) runs on the field during warmups before a wild card game against the New York Giants at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 got a chance to talk with Cook on Friday, and here is what the running back had to say:

“I got it all […] I didn’t really get no reps last year, so the legs are fresh. The resume speaks for itself. I’m still Dalvin Cook. I’m still that guy. For me, I don’t like to toot my own horn. I just like to go out there and put my helmet on and line up on that grass.”

It’s true that at age-28 (he will turn 29 on August 10th), this may be the freshest that Cook’s legs have been in years. He appeared 15 games last season, but he garnered just 67 carries throughout the season, which was a career-low. It was even lower than his rookie season with the Vikings when he played just four games because of injury.

Sep 11, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets running back Dalvin Cook (33) carries the ball against the Buffalo Bills during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Running backs put a massive toll on their bodies throughout their NFL careers, and Cook’s stint with the Vikings was a particularly high workload. He was Minnesota’s workhorse back for four seasons, totaling at least 249 carries every year from 2019-2022.

No active player has recorded more seasons with at least that 249 carries (per Stathead), and the only player to match that total of four years is Derrick Henry, who recently signed with the Baltimore Ravens. Of course, Henry does have two other seasons in which he recorded at least 200 carries though, and his 6’3″, 247-pound frame is a bit more well-equipped to handle this sort of workload.

Still, Cook is a very talented player as indicated by that four-year stretch in Minnesota during which he recorded 5024 rushing yards and 43 rushing touchdowns.

Dalvin Cook
Oct 31, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook. Mandatory Credit: Matt Blewett-USA TODAY Sports.

Inevitably, Cook will get a chance with a team somewhere in the NFL. One potential landing spot could be the Dallas Cowboys, who recently hired Mike Zimmer as their defensive coordinator and signed former Vikings LB Eric Kendricks.

Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Pro Football Reference.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of PurplePTSD.com. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.