ESPN’s Adam Schefter recently commented on how the hiring of Kevin O’Connell to be the team’s head coach could result in the Minnesota Vikings keeping Kirk Cousins around.
Before the Minnesota Vikings even decided to reportedly hire Kevin O’Connell as their new head coach, one of the biggest decisions for the franchise this offseason was going to be about figuring out what to do with quarterback Kirk Cousins.
The next few months are likely going to feature a ton of reports and rumors about where Cousins will play for the 2022 season. With the hiring of O’Connell, however, some believe the veteran quarterback now has a better chance to return to Minnesota for at least one more year.
In fact, ESPN’s Adam Schefter thinks that the arrival of the Vikings’ new head coach could even result in the team giving Cousins an extension before the start of the 2022 season.
Will Kevin O’Connell want the Minnesota Vikings to keep Kirk Cousins?
Prior to Sunday’s Pro Bowl (that featured Cousins, Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook, Brian O’Neill, and Harrison Smith), Schefter stated on ESPN that he believes “Minnesota and Kirk Cousins will figure out something [this offseason], and maybe come up with a restructured contract that adds years on for Kirk Cousins and gives the Vikings salary cap relief this offseason, to give them more money to spend on other players.”
The main reason behind these thoughts from the ESPN insider has to do with Minnesota’s hiring of O’Connell and the previous working relationship he had with Cousins when the two were members of the Washington Commanders.
It’s certainly possible that O’Connell might want the Vikings to keep their current starting quarterback around for the 2022 season. However, that decision probably isn’t going to be up to him.
Minnesota’s new general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah was brought in to fix the team’s current roster and help prepare them to be a contender in the future. Adofo-Mensah might not view an extension for a 33-year-old quarterback as something that will allow the Vikings to improve sooner than later.
Cousins returning to Minnesota in 2022 is definitely still possible, especially since he still has one year left on his contract. But no one should be thinking that the expected hiring of O’Connell is going to prevent the Vikings from listening to trade offers for the veteran quarterback during the next few months.