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April 13, 2024

Do the Vikings want to keep Kirk Cousins? If so, it’s time to get a deal done

Do the Vikings want to keep Kirk Cousins? If so, it’s time to get a deal done

Six years ago, the Vikings wanted quarterback Kirk Cousins. And so they went and got him.

Now, with Cousins less than a month from free agency and a little more than a week before Tampering Central unfolds in Indianapolis at the Scouting Combine, the Vikings and Cousins do not have a contract in place.

Eight days ago, Chris Simms and I interviewed both Cousins and Vikings receiver K.J. Osborn at the Super Bowl media center. (The video is attached.) Based on what I gleaned during — and after — the conversation, I’ll say this. If the Vikings want to keep Cousins, they are not going about it the right way.

Now, there’s a chance they don’t want to keep him. There’s a chance they want to create the impression that he chose to leave. That it wasn’t their call to not pay $45 million per year (or thereabouts) to a quarterback who turns 36 in August, and who is recovering from a torn Achilles tendon. If that’s the strategy, they’re handling it perfectly.

But if they actually want him, the strategy seems to be that they want to see what others will pay before making their move. If that’s the case, it’s a very bad strategy.

Everyone wants to feel wanted and valued. Cousins, by all appearances, would like to stay. But if the Vikings aren’t doing the things that would make him (and his family) feel wanted, giving Cousins (and his family) a chance to feel more wanted elsewhere could prompt Cousins to choose a new team over the Vikings, if the financial offers are equal. It also could potentially cause Cousins to take a little less to go elsewhere, potentially, just to make a point.

Really, who would you want to work for? Someone who values you enough to make an aggressive move to get you, or someone who sighs and shrugs when forced to pay you more than expected because someone else values you more than your current employer does?

We’ll defer to another post the potential Cousins destinations. For now, this is about whether the Vikings will take advantage of the waning days of their head start to keep him. If they truly want to keep him, they need to make him an offer he won’t refuse — ASAFP.

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