Kirk Cousins is going to have a different legacy with the Minnesota Vikings when his time with the team is up after this season.
Cousins is in his sixth season with the Vikings. He’s better than most people give him credit for, but not good enough to be the kind of player Minnesota will always celebrate. Quarterbacks are determined by team success and the Vikings don’t have enough with Cousins. They have won just one playoff game with Cousins.
Cousins may have one more chance to make history with the Vikings this season, and it’s quickly slipping away. The Vikings started the season 0-3 with three close losses, beat the Carolina Panthers and had a chance for a season-changing home win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. That fell.
The Vikings lost to the Chiefs 27-20. They got their chance in the fourth quarter. Cousins drove the Vikings downfield even when Justin Jefferson was sidelined with an injury. They might have tied the game if Alexander Mattison hadn’t dropped a screen pass into his hands a few minutes later. That drive ended the turnover on the fall. One final Viking drive was completed as the clock ran out.
Cousins, who can become a free agent after this season, is no problem. He played well with 284 yards and two touchdowns. But he didn’t play well enough to make the difference in what would have been a big win. That pretty much sums up his time with the Vikings.
The Vikings are 1-4 and that’s historically not a good place to be in the NFL. The season isn’t over, but it already feels like time is running out.
Sunday’s game got off to a rocky start. The Vikings had a 15-yard pass to Josh Oliver on their first play, who fumbled. The Chiefs recovered and scored a touchdown on a short drive.
You have to score a lot of points to keep up with Patrick Mahomes, and the Vikings haven’t been able to do that. Minnesota took a 13-10 lead into the second quarter but it was short-lived. The Chiefs tied the game before halftime, held the ball for most of the third quarter and trailed the Vikings 27-13 in the fourth quarter.
Cousins tried to get the Vikings back into it. They were down seven points in the fourth quarter and had two chances to put together a drive to salvage the win.
A first down turnover ended the drive when a pass interference flag was picked up in the end zone on fourth down. The Vikings had one more desperation shot in the final minute, but time wouldn’t run out and a long layup had to go. There was a shot from 38 yards out from the Vikings in the final moments of the game. Relatives never got a pass. He was sacked.
What’s next for relatives?
Cousins may leave after this season. He will be 36 next season but there will be a market for him. Plenty of teams could use a quarterback with four Pro Bowls to his name.
The Vikings could be ready to move on, though it’s not like they have a great quarterback lineup. But the whole Cousins era seems a little dated. Minnesota can’t get over the hump. It’s not Cousins’ fault, but it’s not like that’s going to change.
This season is not over. The Vikings can rally. They won 13 games a season ago and may even better their record this season. Cousins could be back next season. It’s not like the Vikings have better options.
But the Cousins era is likely to end with a very unsatisfying ending. If so, Vikings fans will always want more from it.