A Kirk Cousins Decision Could Be Coming Soon

Underrated Player
Jan 15, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) runs onto the field before a wild card game against the New York Giants at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

One of the main storylines of the Minnesota Vikings offseason revolves around their QB position.

Namely, Minnesota has to make a decision on whether or not to keep veteran Kirk Cousins around for another season, or if they should decide to bring in a new player to replace him. And, according to recent reports, that decision could be coming sooner rather than later.

A Kirk Cousins Decision Could Be Coming Soon

Kirk Cousins
Oct 8, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass against the Kansas City Chiefs at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

The latest reports surrounding Cousins come from ESPN as Dan Graziano and Jeremy Fowler compiled some notes on what they’ve been hearing over the course of Super Bowl week. Here is what they had to say:

Kirk Cousins’ impending free agency is a story at this year’s Super Bowl, much like it was six years ago when the big game was in Minneapolis. The Minnesota Vikings are working to see if they can keep their 35-year-old quarterback — who is coming off an Achilles tear — and they’d like to have an answer in the next few weeks so they can plan accordingly.

The notes continued:

The final four years of Cousins’ contract voids on the final day of the league year, which means the Vikings can’t franchise him, as the void date is after the franchise tag window. And his $28.5 million in dead salary cap charges would accelerate onto their 2024 cap if he’s not signed to an extension by that date. That dead cap acceleration wouldn’t prevent them from re-signing him, but it would be a lot easier for them to manage the deal if they could get an agreement before March 12 and defray some of those charges into future years of a new deal.

Oct 29, 2023; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) gets pressure from Green Bay Packers linebacker Kenny Clark (97) in the first quarter at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

This urgency from Minnesota makes a lot of sense. Instead of taking on $28.5 million in dead cap for the 2024 season, they would be able to lower Cousins’ cap number if they can agree to an extension in the coming weeks.

Cousins has stated in the past that he wants to retire as a Viking, and both Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Kevin O’Connell have expressed an interest in bringing him back. Here is what Adofo-Mensah said at the postseason press conference back in January:

“I thought we were playing really good football before [Kirk] got injured, and it’s the most important position in sports now. Ultimately, it always comes down to can you find an agreement that works for both sides and all of those things, but as a player, it’s certainly my intention to have him back here.”

Oct 8, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) passes against the Kansas City Chiefs in the second quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

At the end of the day, the decision to bring Cousins back likely doesn’t revolve around how capable he is as a QB. The veteran has shown, especially in O’Connell’s offense, that he can be one of the most prolific players at the position.

Instead, it will come down to the length of the contract as well as how much money Cousins demands from Minnesota, particularly in the form of guaranteed cash. In all, if Fowler and Graziano are correct in their assessments, the decision between Cousins and the Vikings will come in the next 32 days.

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.