It seems like every year since the end of Kirk Cousins’ first season with the Minnesota Vikings, there have been offseason rumors about the Vikings wanting to move on and trade him elsewhere. Whether it’s simply the sentiments of a portion of the fanbase or there was actually chatter happening, the rumors have been out there.
Now, there’s an actual source reporting that there were some discussions of a Cousins trade at this year’s Scouting Combine, but nothing materialized from it. As it happens, the rumors involve the team that seems to be a part of most of the Cousins trade rumors you see out there on the internet.
The source, in this case, is Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, who mentioned the trade talks in a recent segment of his show/podcast about Niners QB Trey Lance needing a fresh start. Florio emphasized that these were talks among people in the “greater league structure,” not just himself.
To my recollection, this is the first acknowledgment of a desire on behalf of the Vikings to actually trade Cousins away as opposed to it just being rampant internet speculation. Kevin O’Connell has made it clear that he likes Cousins and, at this point, is looking forward to him playing the 2023 season in Minnesota. However, the team has not extended Cousins in any way this offseason and do not appear interested in committing to him for the longer term, making finding a potential replacement for him a greater necessity than it may have been over the past couple of years.
I don’t know if the Vikings are going to trade away Kirk Cousins or if they’re going to let him play out his contract. There’s been an increasing amount of steam about the Vikings selecting a quarterback early in this year’s draft, specifically injured Tennessee star Hendon Hooker. Hooker, who suffered a torn ACL in November to end what had been an outstanding season, would likely see very little (if any) action for the Vikings this year if they were to draft him, with the team most likely anticipating handing him the reins in 2024 when Cousins’ contract runs out.
We’re a little more than three weeks away from the 2023 NFL Draft in Kansas City, so we’ll be learning a little more here soon about what, exactly, the Vikings’ long-term plans at the quarterback position might be. The long-term plans might not include Kirk Cousins, and this news tells us that the short-term plans might not include him, either.