Kirk Cousins shrugs off trade rumors amid stellar season

Kirk Cousins

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins is having one of the best seasons of his career, but his team is not. The Vikings are 1-4 and in last place in the NFC North, leading to speculation that Cousins could be traded to a contender before the November 2 deadline. However, Cousins is not paying attention to the trade talk and is focused on helping his team win games.

Kirk Cousins

“You know, I’m just very focused on the Bears and going 1-0 this week,” Cousins said Wednesday when asked about potentially waiving his no-trade clause. “Anything else is just not worth my time or energy or attention.”

Cousins has a no-trade clause in his contract, which expires after this season. He could waive it if he wants a fresh start with a better team elsewhere, and could also grant the Vikings an opportunity to receive a return on the signal-caller who has manned their starting job since 2018. Cousins, however, doesn’t sound too interested in considering such a future – at least not yet.

Cousins playing at a high level despite team’s struggles

Cousins ranks second in the NFL in passing yards (1,498), owns a 13-4 touchdown-to-interception ratio, and stands seventh in passer rating (101.7). He has thrown for at least 300 yards and two touchdowns in four of his five games this season, and has only been sacked six times. He is outplaying his team’s record and deserves better.

The Vikings, on the other hand, are doing the opposite of what propelled them to an NFC North title a year ago – losing close games instead of winning them. They have lost four games by a combined 18 points, and have been plagued by turnovers and defensive lapses. They have given away possession early and often with a league-leading 12 giveaways, and lack the punch to overcome such self-created, early deficits.

Trade market for Cousins could be limited by salary cap

While Cousins is playing at a high level, his trade market could be limited by his salary cap hit. He is due to make $35 million this season, which would be prorated for any team that acquires him. However, he also has a $45 million cap hit for 2024, which is fully guaranteed if he is on a roster on March 20, 2024. That means any team that trades for him would have to either commit to him long-term or restructure his deal.

Additionally, the Vikings would have to eat $10 million in dead money if they trade Cousins this season, which could affect their ability to sign other players or extend their own. They would also have to find a suitable replacement for Cousins, who has been durable and productive for them. The Vikings do not have a viable backup quarterback on their roster, and the draft class of 2024 is not considered strong at the position.

Cousins staying away from social media and rumors

Cousins said he prefers to remain ignorant of the trade rumors and speculation surrounding him, and relies on his old-fashioned flip phone to avoid social media and online chatter. He said he tries to insulate himself from such distractions by design, and focuses on his preparation and performance.

“You know, ignorance is bliss and I’m just really ignorant,” Cousins said. “I don’t really have access to a whole lot and I try to do that by design, so it’s pretty intentional. Aside from high school friends who may text me what they’re reading and I’ll text them back – and I prefer to remain ignorant, you know, so I’d appreciate not getting texts.

“Aside from that, I really don’t know what’s going on. I’ve been insulated at times to the point of being naive and a little stupid, but I’d rather err on that side than consuming everything and just having to … Again, it just takes your focus away from what is important and what will help you play well, so that’s kinda how I wanted to do it.”

Cousins will try to lead the Vikings to their second win of the season when they face the Bears on Sunday at Soldier Field.

By Kane Wilson

Kane Wilson, founder of this news website, is a seasoned news editor renowned for his analytical skills and meticulous approach to storytelling. His journey in journalism began as a local reporter, and he quickly climbed the ranks due to his talent for unearthing compelling stories. Kane completed his Master’s degree in Media Studies from Northwestern University and spent several years in broadcast journalism prior to co-founding this platform. His dedication to delivering unbiased news and ability to present complex issues in an easily digestible format make him an influential voice in the industry.

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