Can the Vikings win a Super Bowl with Kirk Cousins as their quarterback?

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /

Is quarterback Kirk Cousins capable of leading the Minnesota Vikings to their ultimate goal of getting the franchise’s first-ever Super Bowl win?

11 seasons into his NFL career, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has led a team to a playoff victory just once during his tenure in the league.

Cousins has helped a team get into the postseason three times, once with the Washington Commanders in 2015 and twice with the Vikings (2019 and 2022), but failure was experienced more than success during these three appearances.

As he prepares for his 12th year in the NFL, and his sixth with Minnesota, it’s fair to question whether Cousins has what it takes to ever start under center for a team that ends a season with a Vince Lombardi Trophy.

Can Kirk Cousins lead the Minnesota Vikings to a Super Bowl?

When Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah sits down at his desk this offseason to figure out what the future of the franchise might resemble, evaluating the quarterback position should be one of his top priorities.

Cousins has one year remaining on his current contract with Minnesota, and some have wondered whether the team should give him another extension to keep him on the roster past the 2023 season.

Cousins will be 35-years-old by the time the Vikings play their first game of the 2023 regular season, so time is certainly running out if Adofo-Mensah and Minnesota head coach Kevin O’Connell believe their quarterback can help them accomplish the lofty goals they have in mind for the franchise.

During the 2022 regular season, Cousins displayed a newfound ability to keep fighting, even if the Vikings trailed by a double-digit margin.

During Mike Zimmer’s four years with the quarterback in Minnesota, a double-digit margin was typically too large to overcome. But with O’Connell taking over as the Vikings’ head coach in 2022, Cousins’ fear of failure didn’t appear to be as large.

However, old habits reared their ugly head in the Wild Card round of this season’s playoffs against the New York Giants when the Minnesota quarterback threw short of the sticks on a game-clinching fourth-down play that resulted in a first-round exit by the purple and gold.

How much weight should be put on that one play? It’s not the first time we’ve seen Cousins malfunction at a critical time, but it seemed during the regular season like he might have been past a moment like he had in the playoffs against the Giants.

Should the Vikings put their trust in Cousins as their quarterback for another few seasons, or was the fourth-down mistake enough to convince Adofo-Mensah to begin looking elsewhere for a starting quarterback?

When it comes to deciding whether Cousins can lead Minnesota to a Super Bowl win or not, there are plenty of examples that people can point to of above-average, and even below-average, quarterbacks starting under center on a Super Bowl-winning roster.

So is Cousins winning a Super Bowl in a Vikings uniform possible? Yeah, sure, it’s possible. But should anyone make any serious wagers on it actually happening? At this moment in time, the chances of it happening still seem low.

Let’s see if Cousins can just lead Minnesota to a conference championship first. If he can get the Vikings a game away from the Super Bowl, then it’s fair to believe that they might actually have a chance of becoming a champion with him as their starter.

Until then, however, Cousins is just going to remain the most recent example of a Minnesota quarterback with tons of talent and nothing to show for it.

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