Vikings Enter Trade Talks With AFC Contender for Kirk Cousins: Report

Kirk Cousins

Getty Kirk Cousins of the Minnesota Vikings.

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins is garnering serious interest in the trade market.

After Aaron Rodgers re-signed with the Green Bay Packers and Russell Wilson was traded to the Denver Broncos, many quarterback-needy teams could pay a premium for the Vikings quarterback.

And with the free agency window opening in five days, desperation will undoubtedly mount more for those teams.

But for now, there has been reported interest, says SKOR North’s Judd Zulgad and Phil Mackey.

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Colts Called Vikings About Cousins

In a March 10 airing of the Purple Daily podcast, Mackey reported that the Colts have called the Vikings about Cousins in the wake of recent quarterback drama in Indianapolis.

“A little birdie has told Purple Daily that the Colts and Vikings have had a conversation about Kirk Cousins,” Mackey said. “It hasn’t gotten very far to this point because the Vikings aren’t just going to give Kirk Cousins away. But with six days until the league year opens up, there is a lot of conversation happening behind the scenes.”

The Colts traded away Carson Wentz to the Washington Commanders after a one-year trial with the former No. 2 overall pick, offloading $28 million owed to Wentz and picking up a 2022 third-round pick and a conditional third-rounder in 2023 that can become a second if Wentz plays 70% of offensive snaps next season, per NBC Sports.

Indianapolis has expressed its need for stronger quarterback play with a bolstered defense and adequate offensive weapons. The Colts have nearly $70 million in cap space approaching the free agency window and will want to sort out the quarterback position soon to move onto other needs.

Meanwhile, the Vikings continue to play the long game as conversations should become more serious in the coming days.

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Colts in a Similar Position the Vikings Were

Indianapolis finds itself in a similar position Minnesota once found itself in.

Seemingly a quarterback away from being a true contender, the Colts, boasting an offense and defense that ranked ninth in points last season, could be willing to pay the price for Cousins — a similar risk the Vikings took in 2018.

Minnesota had a top-tier defense and an offense brimming with potential coming off an NFC Championship game appearance. The 2018 and 2019 seasons were the Vikings’ window to win that Rick Spielman tried to extend with another two-year, $66 million investment into Cousins.

But an exodus of veteran talent and injuries led to a dismantling of Mike Zimmer’s once-vaunted defense and ultimately his and Spielman’s jobs.

And while Cousins has performed at a high level over the past two seasons, Minnesota hasn’t had a winning record in over two calendar years. More veterans are aging out of their prime and becoming potential trade candidates in Adam Thielen, Dalvin Cook, Eric Kendricks and Michael Pierce.

Another extension, which Cousins appears unwilling to sign at the moment, would only delay a needed re-tooling of the roster the Vikings cannot afford at the moment.

Meanwhile, the Colts have the money to pay Cousins in his final year and get him a talented veteran left tackle and a new receiver in free agency, which could warrant Indianapolis’ willingness to take a chance on Cousins on a one-year rental.

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