Are the Vikings noncommittal on Kirk Cousins past 2023?

Could Minnesota be in the quarterback market next offseason?

On Tuesday at the NFL Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell skirted past questions about QB Kirk Cousins‘ future past this season. 

“I’m just excited for year two for him in this offense,” O’Connell said. He expressed confidence that this upcoming season will be among his best and “when that happens it’s going to be a great thing for the Vikings.” 

Beyond that is anyone’s guess, including O’Connell’s. 

Cousins is a free agent following this season and on the surface would seem like a strong choice for a contract extension. He is 46-33-1 in five seasons with the Vikings and has completed 67.8 percent of his passes for 20,934 yards 153 touchdowns and 50 interceptions.

Last season, he led Minnesota to 13 regular season wins for only the second time this century. But even when leading the team to one of its best seasons in recent memory, cracks began to emerge. He threw a career-high 14 interceptions last season and his completion percentage (65.9 percent) was his worst since 2017, his final season in Washington.

General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah has made some big moves this offseason, cutting fan favorites Adam Thielen and Eric Kendricks. After being the runaway NFC North winner a season ago, Minnesota has the second-best odds of winning the division in 2023, per Oddschecker.

The Vikings’ odds (+310) are closer to third-place Bears (+360) than the projected first-place finisher Lions (+150).

They were eliminated by the Giants in the wild-card round, with Minnesota’s comeback attempt failing after Cousins played it safe with a short completion on fourth-and-eight instead of trying for a more aggressive attempt beyond the line to gain.

Minnesota might be more assertive next offseason if Cousins comes up short again this year.

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