Former Vikings RB Dalvin Cook wants to join an outdated offense

The running back blamed Minnesota's schemes for his 2022 struggles
Former Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook
Former Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook / Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Former Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook would like to join an NFL team that's going to feature him in a "ground and pound" offense.

With the Minnesota Vikings from 2019 to 2021, running back Dalvin Cook averaged 23 touches per game in an offense that centered around his strengths.

In 2022, with Kevin O'Connell replacing Mike Zimmer as the head coach of the Vikings, Cook saw his touches drop to around 18 per contest. Instead of the running back being the center of Minnesota's offense, star wide receiver Justin Jefferson and the team's passing game became the driving force behind O'Connell's offensive strategy.

Now that he's no longer a member of the Vikings, Cook apparently wants to find a team that is willing to use him more like the way Minnesota did from 2019 to 2021.

Former Minnesota Vikings RB Dalvin Cook is unlikely to get what he desires in 2023

During a recent appearance on "The Adam Schefter Podcast", Cook discussed how the Vikings' offensive scheme in 2022 didn't exactly play to his strengths.

"I'm a three-down back. Running the ball, outside zone, inside zone, that's what I do. That's my bread and butter. That's not their scheme. They want to get the ball out wide to the guys outside, and they want to toss the ball around, and that's not what I'm looking [for]."

Then the former Minnesota running back described what he's hoping to find during his search for a new team this year.

"I want somebody that's going to ground and pound, and we're going to make plays on the outside, and I'm going to help somebody win."

It's great that Cook knows what he wants from his next team. The problem is he's unlikely to find a team that is willing to build their entire offense around him right before training camps get underway at the end of July.

Also, the type of offense Cook wants to be a part of doesn't really exist in the NFL anymore. Teams are shifting further and further away from using three-down backs, and instead, an offensive backfield featuring multiple running backs with different skill sets is what is preferred by the majority of the league.

At least for 2023, Cook is probably going to have to take what he can get if he wants to play next season. It's not like he got released right before the start of free agency back in March. It's now June and most teams around the NFL already have a good idea about which players they want to feature in their offensive backfield next season.

Cook should still have plenty of interest from a number of teams during the next few weeks. But the way in which these teams would like to use him next season probably isn't going to match his desires.