Vikings: Kirk Cousins the lone NFC quarterback to beat 49ers

The Minnesota Vikings are sitting and watching as the San Francisco 49ers are now back in the Super Bowl for a rematch against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Kirk Cousins is rehabbing his torn Achilles, but can say something that no other NFC quarterback this season can say: He beat the 49ers. Not only did he help lead the Vikings to a win over one of the best teams in the NFL, he did it on Monday Night Football.

It was Week 7, Oct. 23. Cousins was 35-of-45 passing for 378 yards and two touchdowns. Both of them went to rookie Jordan Addison. The Vikings needed other stars to step up, two weeks after losing Justin Jefferson to a hamstring injury. It was one of their best games of the season in an otherwise disappointing 7-10 season.

Everything changed when Cousins went down with an Achilles injury at Lambeau Field. His 2,331 passing yards and 18 touchdowns led the NFL, and he had just five interceptions.

For the first time since signing with the Vikings in 2018, Cousins is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent in March. He has said consistently he wants to return to the Vikings and eventually retire with Minnesota. The front office, coaches and ownership want him back.

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah said after the season he wants Cousins to stay on a deal that works for both sides. Cousins likely wants a minimum of two years, and guaranteed money. It will likely take north of $40 million per season for the Vikings to keep Cousins.

Is that a price they’re willing to pay, while also pursuing a quarterback in April’s NFL Draft? They have to pay Justin Jefferson, and see if they can make contracts work with Danielle Hunter, Christian Darrisaw and others. They have needs on defense to address.

We thought Cousins might be forced to take an injury discount. But after seeing a combination of Nick Mullens, Joshua Dobbs and Jaren Hall try to steer the ship, the Vikings will likely do whatever they can to bring back Cousins. Mullens and Dobbs couldn’t stop throwing the ball to the other team, Hall had fumbling issues.

We’ll see what happens as we get closer to the NFL Combine.