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Is Kirk Cousins a Top 10 Quarterback in the NFL?

During the broadcast of “Monday Night Football,” Troy Aikman brought up an interesting point while the Minnesota Vikings had the ball.

The Hall-of-Fame quarterback claimed that Kirk Cousins was a Top 10 player at the position. After an impressive victory over the San Francisco 49ers, it is a good time to bring up this debate and time for some to realize that this is indeed true.

Let’s look at the points against Cousins. First, his primetime record. This victory moved Cousins to 3-10 on Monday night. In the grand scheme of things, this means nothing in terms of his standing. Cousins has turned the ball over in the past. This is something he hasn’t done much in Minnesota. Finally, and the biggest one, Cousins hasn’t won. He has just one playoff victory in his career, a 2020 victory against the New Orleans Saints.

This is the main point against Cousins and is a valid one. The rebuttal is that how many quarterbacks are known for winning? There is only one Patrick Mahomes. When you look at a list of quarterback that are certainly better than Cousins right now, only a handful have won.

Mahomes, Joe Burrow, Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts, a healthy Aaron Rodgers.This is tier one. Maybe Matthew Stafford but that is debatable. Of course, Stafford’s Super Bowl victory with the Los Angeles Rams is part of it.

Cousins leads tier two, along with Justin Herbert, Trevor Lawrence, and Lamar Jackson. Dad Prescott can be throw in along with Tua Tagovailoa and maybe Jared Goff. The two latter have been thrown into great situations.The point is, would you really take all of these names over Cousins?

If winning is the standard, the second tier has no credibility. Herbert continues to fail year after year with the Chargers. Lawrence hasn’t won (yet). Jacksonville is on the rise. Tua and Goff were put in better situations. Cousins went from one incomplete team in Washington to another in Minnesota. And his numbers have been there.

First off, Cousins plays every week. He became the full-time starter in Washington in 2015 and played three years. He started all 48 games during that time. This is nw Cousins’ sixth year in Minnesota and he has missed just one game during that span.

Second, numbers are there. In 2016, Cousins paced a Washington offense that was second in the league under Sean McVay with 4,917 yards. This continued in Minnesota. Over his first two years, Cousins completed 70% of his passed. He threw 56 touchdowns to just 16 interceptions. In 2021, Cousins threw for 4,227 yards and 33 touchdowns with seven interceptions.

This season, Cousins is throwing the ball at a high rate, leading the league in pass attempts and completions. He has totaled 2,057 yards with a league-leading 16 touchdowns.

Cousins needs to win. That has been the major issue in his career. Whether it happens this year or if he is sent to a contender elsewhere, winning would change the tune around Cousins. Even without it, the Vikings quarterback has been a Top 10 player at the position and it is time to acknowledge it.


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