Kirk Cousins’ make-or-break season with Vikings begins Week 1


Kirk Cousins is heading into a major season for the Minnesota Vikings, beginning with a Week 1 matchup at house in opposition to the Inexperienced Bay Packers. After the Vikings fired head coach Mike Zimmer and common supervisor Rick Spielman, the group signed the quarterback to a one-year contract extension. 

The Vikings additionally moved on from 2021 third-round draft pick Kellen Mond, who they hoped can be the inheritor obvious to Cousins. As a substitute of a second-year QB ready within the wings, the group traded for Las Vegas Raiders veteran Nick Mullens to again up Cousins. 

However Cousins’ future with the Vikings — who completed 8-9 final season — stays a thriller. New regimes have a tendency to maneuver ahead with a quarterback of their liking. With a stacked quarterback class for 2023, head coach Kevin O’Connell and common supervisor Kwesi Adofo-Mensah might be eyeing the long run whereas Cousins is beneath heart this yr. 

When Zimmer was employed as head coach for Minnesota in 2014, Spielman rewarded him with rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, shifting on from draft bust Christian Ponder. Adofo-Mensah may do the identical and draft an inheritor obvious for O’Connell. 

O’Connell served because the offensive coordinator for the Tremendous Bowl champion Rams final yr, enjoying a major half in Matthew Stafford’s resurgence. Whereas he may do the identical for Cousins, it is a two-way road. If Cousins stays a .500 quarterback, the writing might be on the wall to maneuver on. 

For Cousins, it begins Week 1 in opposition to the Packers. Going through a division rival is at all times key, and with home-field benefit, the strain is on for Cousins to carry out. 

On offense, Cousins has a revamped offensive line and returning weapons akin to Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Prepare dinner and Adam Thielen. 

On protection, the Vikings will use a 3-4 as an alternative of the 4-3 format they’ve run for years. With added items akin to OLB Jordan Hicks and Za’Darius Smith, and rookies akin to CB Andrew Sales space, Jr. and security Lewis Cine, the recipe for achievement is in place for the Vikings and Cousins. 

Now Cousins –the first QB to command a fully-guaranteed deal– should present his value to the brand new regime.

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