Vikings Among Teams ‘On Radar’ to Make Blockbuster Draft-Day Trade: Report

O'Connell, Cousins, Vikings

Getty Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell (left) and quarterback Kirk Cousins.

The Minnesota Vikings could literally go a half-dozen ways at QB, though two options remain the best — re-signing Kirk Cousins to a team-friendly deal or trading into the top of the draft to select a franchise prospect.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported from the NFL Combine on Sunday, March 3, that Minnesota is one of the teams “on the radar” to make a trade with the Washington Commanders for the No. 2 overall pick this April.

“Washington has received trade inquiries from teams on the No. 2 pick. While they might not be hard, actionable offers, the interest in moving up is there,” Fowler wrote. “Among teams that could be on the QB radar are the Giants (No. 6), Falcons (No. 8), Vikings (No. 11) and Raiders (No. 13).”

If the Vikings make that trade, or a trade with the New England Patriots to move up to the No. 3 selection, they will presumably do so to draft either Jayden Daniels of LSU or Drake Maye of UNC.

Kirk Cousins’ Next Move Will Largely Determine Vikings’ Path Forward

Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings

GettyQuarterback Kirk Cousins of the Minnesota Vikings.

Fowler and ESPN’s Dan Graziano reported that Minnesota’s top choice is to bring Cousins back in free agency, though the sides remain far enough apart in contract negotiations that the QB hitting the open market on March 13 is a reasonably likely outcome.

The Cousins-Minnesota negotiation is nuanced, due in part to history. Cousins has spent six seasons with the club — that’s a lot of shared experience. Just 10 days from the new league year, Minnesota is at least loosely bracing for Cousins to test the negotiating window that begins on March 11, though there’s a lot of time left for the sides to continue talking. This close to free agency, waiting might be Cousins’ logical play — and one that essentially puts the team’s broader free agency plans on hold.

Does Minnesota go younger at certain positions for long-term strength, or should it load up on immediate roster help now? The answer could depend on whether Cousins re-signs. As one high-ranking exec with another team said, the feeling is that Minnesota wants to extend Cousins but won’t live or die by that desire. It will have limits.

Atlanta Falcons’ Moves Will Have Significant Impact on Vikings’ Future

Raheem Morris, Denver Broncos

GettyNew head coach of the Atlanta Falcons Raheem Morris.

Fowler and Graziano also reported that the Falcons — who are potentially competition for the Vikings in any attempt to trade up to No. 2 with the Commanders or No. 3 with the Patriots — will make a strong play for Cousins if he becomes available.

“I have been told by multiple sources this week that signing Cousins — not trading for Justin Fields — is the Falcons’ top QB solution, assuming Cousins makes it to free agency,” Graziano wrote.

The circumstances render the Falcons’ play at quarterback monumental for what happens in Minnesota — as Cousins, Fields, Daniels or Maye could all be under center in Atlanta next season.

All four could also potentially wind up starting for the Vikings, as Fowler noted that Minnesota is also on the radar in trade conversations involving Fields.

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