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KirkWatch: America Holds Its Breath

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 09: Kirk Cousins throws a mini football at Radio Row at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center ahead of Super Bowl LVIII on February 09, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Candice Ward/Getty Images)
Candice Ward/Getty Images

Welcome to KirkWatch, a one-part series in which we track the impending free-agency derby for Hall Of Fame money-accruer Kirk Cousins.

NFL free agency opens up next week, and there’s one question on the mind of every owner, GM, coach, player, and fan in the league: Where will Kirk Cousins end up? Not unlike the whirlwind trade speculation that revolved around Packers legend Aaron Rodgers a year ago, the idea of Cousins changing teams could have seismic ramifications both within the NFL and the heel surgery industry. Thankfully, recent events have added a bit of clarity. Follow the breadcrumbs with me now as I guide you to true enlightenment.

What is Kirk’s current contract situation?

Kirk’s contract voids at the beginning of the league year on Wednesday, March 13. If his current team, the Vikings, re-sign him after that, they’d incur a $28.5 million dead cap penalty for the 2024 season, which would all but assure that he ends up playing for another team.

How hard are you praying that the Vikings let this deadline pass?

So, so hard. You think Kirk Cousins is a devoted Christian? Friends and neighbors, I would suck Jesus’s DICK to get this man out of my life. The Lord is my shepherd now. If He gets rid of Cousins, I’ll do all of the big Christian stuff for him. I’ll march against the gays, call abortion murder, follow Clay Travis’s gambling advice … all of that kooky shit.

But you saw how badly your team played after he got injured, right?

Congratulations! You just talked yourself into wanting Kirk Cousins to play for your team. Enjoy six years of punching yourself in the balls. I think you’ll enjoy it. I know I did!

AHAHAHAHA you’re gonna be so mad when Minnesota resigns him in the coming week.

Your jokes mean nothing to me. Every current indication is that the man is as good as gone.

Prove it, asshole.

Why would I do that when I can let Mike Florio, via football NPC Dov Kleiman, do that work for me?

We can’t get into the specifics, for now. But we’re getting very credible indications that Cousins is seriously considering moving his family to Atlanta. Which would mean, obviously, that he’d be signing with the Falcons.

Let that sink it, wisenheimer. Cousins isn’t just considering a move to Atlanta, he’s SERIOUSLY considering it. You don’t seriously consider something unless you plan on actually doing it. That’d be like premeditating a murder and then bailing because you decided to go have a burrito instead. Never happens.

Well, is Kirk on a plane to Atlanta right now?

I cannot verify it, but I bet he’s seriously considering it.

OK, but that was just one report you cited. This is some real blogger shit.

Au contraire, mon frère. It’s not just Florio reading the tea leaves. May I introduce you to the ironclad reportage of one Dianna Russini of The Athletic?!

Over the next month, I’m keeping an eye on the Falcons. They believe Cousins is the type of player who moves them from a fringe playoff team to a contender... It makes all the sense in the world.

You hear that? All the sense in the world. Put Kirk Cousins on the Falcons and suddenly they’re a juggernaut. Everyone in the NFL knows this, and fears it. Oh my stars, Kirk Cousins on the Falcons?, they’re fretting right now. How do we stop this superteam? We’d have better luck stopping all wars!

Oh, and how about this, from Dan Graziano of ESPN?

I have been told by multiple sources this week that signing Cousins -- not trading for Justin Fields -- is the Falcons' top QB solution, assuming Cousins makes it to free agency.

BOOMSHAKALAKA! The top QB solution. Better than any other potential solution that could be found within the pool of candidates at the quarterback position, per sources.

Why would the Falcons want Cousins when they could draft a new guy instead?

Because, as nearly every report about this has indicated, Falcons owner Arthur Blank is 81 years old. That means that he is going to die soon. He doesn’t want to die going 7-10. He clearly wants to die going 9-8. And who's the best man for that job? I’ll tell you who: Kirk Daniel Cousins.

But what about other free-agent QBs, like Baker Mayfield or Russell Wilson?

Do not make me laugh. Serious football teams want the Kirkster.

What about his dead leg?

Motherfucker, does this leg look dead to you?

If you ask me, he looks even BETTER than before his Achilles injury. He should probably tear the other one! Then he’d be a GOD.

I think this post is just a pathetic, homerist attempt at manifesting Kirk’s departure by grasping at any straw you can find.

It is … BUT to round out my case, I’d like you to hear from someone a bit closer to the quarterback than me. The defense calls Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell to the stand!

[courtroom gasps]

There is every indication that O’Connell is the only person in the Vikings power structure who wants Cousins back. This is because O’Connell is an insecure tweenager who needs his Kirky to feel safe at night, and doesn’t want to have to earn his money developing a young stallion at the position. But the rest of the Vikings, including GM and world-class bullshitter Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, would like to get on with their lives (as would I), and it would appear that they have their head coach outvoted.

That’s how you end up with O’Connell gently complaining to Rich Eisen about potential tampering with Cousins during the Combine, and why he tells Eisen that Cousins has “earned the right to be a free agent.” Again, go back to that dead cap hit. If Cousins reaches free agency, he’s gone. And here we have O’Connell admitting that Cousins intends to formally become one. You don’t have to be Dov Kleiman—and anyone in the phone book might be!—to see that this man isn’t hoping Kirk comes back, but already mourning that he will not.

OK, but all everyone does during this part of the offseason is lie. You won’t know shit until Monday.

I see your point, but also fuck you.

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