The Minnesota Vikings spent the most bucks on a quarterback this offseason – and readers and listeners of the Talk of Fame Network believe the defending NFC North champion also got the biggest bang for its buck in signing Kirk Cousins.
We asked our followers in our weekly Talk of Fame Network poll which NFL team got the best deal on a quarterback this offseason, and the Vikings with Cousins won going away with 38.1 percent of the vote. The Denver Broncos with Case Keenum were next at 28.5 percent of the vote, which is interesting because Keenum is the quarterback Cousins will replace in Minnesota.
The only other team with double-digit support was the Washington Redskins, who acquired Alex Smith in a trade with the Kansas City Chiefs.
The three Talk of Fame Network hosts were once again divided in their vote, with Ron Borges casting his ballot for Keenum, Clark Judge for Smith and Rick Gosselin for Cousins.
“Cousins got the most money,” Borges said, “but he's yet to lead a team anywhere. The Broncos got a guy in Case Keenum who cost them less and has done more. Unless he's a `one-year wonder,' Case Keenum was the best QB deal for the money.”
Keenum stepped in for the injured Sam Bradford last September and steered the Vikings to a 13-3 record and a spot in the NFC title game. He completed 67.6 percent of his passes for 3,547 yards with 22 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. Undrafted coming out of college, the Broncos become Keenum’s fourth team in his six-year career.
“Unlike Cousins, Smith has a winning record,” Judge argued. “Unlike Cousins, he's led the league in passing. Unlike Cousins, he's won a playoff game. In fact, he's won two. And, most important, unlike Cousins, he won't cost you $84 million in guaranteed money.”
Like Keenum, Smith also quarterbacked a team to a division title in 2017. He completed 67.5 percent of his passes for the Chiefs for 4,042 yards with 26 touchdowns and five interceptions. But Kansas City drafted a quarterback (Patrick Mahomes) in the first round last April, so Smith was merely keeping the seat warm.
“The fact that Ron and Clark justify their choices based on comparisons to Cousins tells you they both think Cousins is the measuring stick of this offseason class,” Gosselin said. “He was the best quarterback to change teams – so Minnesota got the best deal.”
Cousins is coming off a third consecutive 4,000-yard season with the Redskins, having passed for 4,093 yards with 27 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. The Vikings gave him a three-year contract that guarantees him $84 million.