Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has proven that he’s a very shrewd businessman. He’s also a pretty good passer, at least when a play is unfolding as designed.
Visiting with PFT Live at the Scouting Combine, Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell addressed the positive attributes of Cousins.
“I really do believe having attempted to play quarterback in this league myself and not ultimately achieving that goal because of the fact I wasn’t accurate enough as a quarterback,” O’Connell said. “I think the number one for me now that I look at veteran quarterbacks, rookie quarterbacks, I evaluate them throughout any process is they need to be naturally accurate. Kirk is that. Kirk is one of the naturally accurate passers in this league. He does not need to think about throwing the football, being accurate, where he wants to place the ball. He naturally does it in the rhythm and timing of any offense he’s ever been in. That’s really been one of his traits that’s allowed him to have a lot of success.”
O’Connell sees other positives about Cousins.
“I think he’s tough,” O’Connell said. “I think he’s durable. I think he leads in his own way that he’s really become comfortable with throughout his career as he’s gained more experience and stepped into a lot of different huddles with a lot of teammates in multiple spots. Watching him here with this group and when you really start to turn on the tape and watch the level of quarterback at which he’s played it’s about continuing to refine and have him continue to grow within the system we’re going to build for him and the rest of our offensive players, both up front, the skill players. There’s a really good group to work with here. The sky’s the limit as far as how you want to play offense with the type of talent we have on that side of the ball. Kirk’s going to be a huge part of it. He’s our quarterback. I feel really good about his fit in building something and being a part of building something that we want to be as an offense here in Minnesota.”
It’s good that O’Connell believes so strongly in Cousins. And O’Connell’s assessment isn’t necessarily off the mark. But there’s a ceiling on Cousins. One year after another, that ceiling becomes more firm and solidified. At a certain point, it’s not about what a guy can become. He has become who he is.
That doesn’t mean Cousins can’t win. But he, unlike the true, short-list franchise quarterbacks, need more around him. A crippling defense, which he doesn’t currently have. Solid receivers and running backs, which he does have. An offensive line that allows him to run the play that’s called, which he desperately needs.