Kevin O’Connell Expects Big Things from Kirk Cousins in 2023
This offseason, the Minnesota Vikings decided against making Kirk Cousins their quarterback of the future. This, after he was reportedly offering his services at a discount. That means, once again, Kirk is betting on himself this season.
Kevin O’Connell setting big goals for Kirk Cousins
What does that mean for Kevin O’Connell’s expectations? Big things, said the 2nd-year head coach on Tuesday at Tuesday’s annual “League Meetings”. KOC pointed to Cousins’ familiarity with his offense as the biggest game-changer.
#Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell on QB Kirk Cousins set to play out his contract, “I’m just excited for Year 2 for him in this offseason. … My goal is for 2023 to be one of the best seasons of his career and when that happens it’s going to be a great thing for the #Vikings.”— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 28, 2023
In his first season with O’Connell, Kirk Cousins threw for more yards (4,547) than he ever had as Vikings QB under Zimmer. He also performed better in clutch situations and the team won a lot more close games because of that.
But beyond yards and wins, there aren’t a lot of numbers that point to 2022 as a stand out season for the 34-year-old quarterback. He was dropped into a suddenly pass-happy offense, oftentimes under heavy pressure, and told to be more aggressive. His efficiency statistics took a hit because of it.
He threw for more interceptions (14) than ever before, logged one of the worst QB ratings of his career (92.5) and his worst season PFF grade as a Viking (77.4). I don’t point these things out to throw shade at Kirk Cousins.
If Kevin O’Connell is right and his 11-year veteran QB is about to take off in year-2 of his offense… then we could be in for an aerial showcase next fall. Imagine the numbers Cousins will put up if he returns to the type of consistency and efficiency he has displayed for most of his career…
Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan