The 2017 Minnesota Vikings put together one of the most enjoyable seasons in franchise history. No, it didn’t end like we had hoped, but it was a great run that was a bit of a surprise for some folks when Sam Bradford and then Dalvin Cook went down.
Through the adversity the locker room stuck together, and the sum of the parts became greater than the individual. there were no ‘me first’ attitudes, and everyone put the team first. For me, one of the reasons I really enjoyed that team was the camraderie they had, and you could see it build every week. From Case Keenum’s impassioned post game locker room speech after the Bucs win, to Keenum being the head cheerleader when Teddy Bridgewater returned to play against the Bengals, to the emotional overload that was the Minneapolis Miracle...
...this team was one that I truly enjoyed cheering for. So when Case Keenum, Teddy Bridgewater, and Sam Bradford all left the Vikings at the end of the season for free agent deals elsewhere and signed Kirk Cousins, one of the things that was concerning, at least for me, was whether or not the Vikings could maintain that chemistry with a new quarterback, or whether it would begin to fracture. It’s hard to explain it unless you’ve been in situations where you’ve had great morale, but it’s difficult to achieve and easy to lose.
But since arriving in Minnesota, Cousins has been saying, and now doing, all the right things:
That picture was from the Instagram account of WR Stefon Diggs, and we see Diggs, Cousins, Adam Thielen, and Mack Brown working out together. When his introductory press conference, Cousins stated he wanted to just be one of the guys and assimilate in to the locker room.
This seems like a pretty good start.
I’m not trying to proclaim that this means the Vikings are going to run the table and will have a perfect locker room environment again this year. But it does appear that Cousins isn’t a ‘me first’ guy, he fits the type of player the Vikings want on their team, and is doing everything he can to establish a good rapport with guys he’s going to be playing with before the off-season workouts get under way.
As disappointing as the end of last season was, seeing things like this gets me really fired up for 2018.