The hottest team for quite some time regarding the Kirk Cousins situation is the Minnesota Vikings, but the up-till-now Washington Redskins quarterback hasn’t ruled out the other options on the table: Denver Broncos, New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals.
The hottest rumors suggest that the Vikings are willing to give Cousins the $90 million in guaranteed money over 3 years he’s looking for. The Vikings have $47.6 million in cap space, but it will obviously seriously limit them moving forward, although the team’s contract situation, even going forward a year or two, won’t be too handicapped by such a signing.
The team with the most money to spend that seems to be in the picture is the Jets, with over $89 million to spend. It’s going to be tougher for both the Broncos and Cardinals, who need a quarterback of Cousins’ caliber, to sign him. The Broncos have $23 million to spend, the Cardinals only $20.2 million. Obviously, restructuring some deals could free up some free agency cash.
But as Cousins prepares to leave the Redskins, the team’s he’s been on since 2012 and eventually took over once the illusion of Robert Griffin III ever coming back to himself evaporated, it seems that the Vikings offer the best possibility for Cousins to win right now, which has to be a factor. The Vikings were tied for the best record in the NFC at 13-3 and made it to the conference championship game. Both the Jets and Broncos finished last season at 5-11. The Cardinals were 8-8.
Two years after leading the Redskins to the playoffs, Cousins finished 7-9 as a starter in his third consecutive season as one. His numbers have declined in each of the last season, but that might have something to do with his offensive line. He was sacked 41 times last season, losing more yards to sacks than any other quarterback in the NFL. That situation might not be significantly better on the teams listed as his next potential destination.