Vikings commit to safety by sticking with Kirk Cousins

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /

The Minnesota Vikings had options to move on from Kirk Cousins this past offseason, but their commitment to safety prevailed.

The 2022 offseason was a dawning of a new era for the Minnesota Vikings, having fired both head coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman. The Vikings then replaced Spielman with Kwesi-Adofo Mensah and they replaced Zimmer with Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell.

Change in coaching and management added speculation to whether Minnesota would make a change at the quarterback position or not. Especially when the Panthers reportedly called the Vikings to inquire about the availability of Kirk Cousins. The call didn’t go far, and Minnesota elected to not only keep Cousins, but they signed him to an extension as well.

The Vikings elected to pass on this year’s quarterback prospects in the NFL Draft and they did not show interest in former first-rounders such as Marcus Mariota or Mitchell Trubisky either. But Minnesota did end up re-signing Sean Mannion to be Cousins’ backup.

What committing to Kirk Cousins means for the Minnesota Vikings

Instead of trading away Cousins, and replacing him with a new face, the Vikings have committed to playing the 2022 season safe. They’ll head into the preseason with Cousins, Mannion, and second-year pro Kellen Mond taking reps under center.

Mond has recently received praise from O’Connell, so while the backup spot could be up for grabs, Cousins remains the starter. With the same quarterback under center for the fifth season in a row, Minnesota will see what their new head coach can do with Cousins.

It’s the safest move on paper, as O’Connell and Cousins worked together in 2017 when the Vikings’ new head coach served as the quarterbacks coach for the Washington Commanders.

Additionally, O’Connell was part of the Rams’ Super Bowl-winning staff last season that saw a career resurgence and a properly utilized Matthew Stafford.

Seeing what their new regime can bring to the table, Minnesota is electing to hand them an offensive roster that looks very similar to 2021, with hopes of improvement heading into the 2022 regular season.

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