Kirk Cousins likely to return as Vikings starting QB in 2021

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Kirk Cousins likely to return as Vikings starting QB in 2021

Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman has publicly backed quarterback Kirk Cousins to return to the team as the starting quarterback for the next season. In the 2018 offseason, the Vikings signed Cousins to a three-year, $84 million deal.

In March 2020, Cousins signed a two-year, $66 million extension. After signing a notable extension, the expectation was placed on Cousins to lead the Vikings to a deep run last season. Unforunately for Cousins and the Vikings, the team didn't perform on the level they were hoping to as they finished with seven wins and nine losses and missed out on the playoffs.

"I think Coach [Zimmer] put that to bed when he spoke after the season," Spielman told reporters, as quoted on ESPN. "Kirk Cousins is our quarterback. I know there's a lot of rumors floating around out there, but Kirk Cousins is our quarterback.

We felt that he played very well, probably the best that he's ever played, down that stretch last year. "Kirk is our quarterback going forward, and I look forward to him [having] another year in this system. I'm excited for him and what he's going to bring to our team next year."

Cousin's job appears to be safe

Last season, Cousins threw for 4,265 yards, 35 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Cousin's issues with turnovers costed the Vikings some wins and some doubted if the quarterback would return to the team in 2021.

But after the season ended, head coach Mike Zimmer publicly backed Cousins to return to the team next season. It appears that the Vikings won't be taking a quarterback in the upcoming NFL draft. "I don't want to ever force taking a quarterback when there's not a quarterback there to take, because that's when you make mistakes," Spielman said.

"I don't know the best term to use without you guys putting it in quotes. ... Regardless [of position], take the philosophy of the best player available where you're picking. Or if there's a guy you covet who's still hanging around, being aggressive enough to go up and get that player, regardless of position.

"I still think Kirk right now is still in the prime of his career, at 32. And he's got a lot of good football left in him. But we'll always look at the different options and if there is anything in the draft as well."