The Bears won’t get to see Kirk Cousins Sunday. Because the Vikes have nothing to play for, they’re the 6th seed who will get murdered by the any of the Packers, Saints, or Seahawks. Which is unfortunate, because seeing Kirk Cousins is usually high comedy. Until now, because it might be what’s coming for the Bears.
You probably know the records by now. Cousins is 6-30 against teams with winning records. 0-9 on Monday night. Not much better in other primetime games. Whenever the Vikings need Cousins to be good, he’s been terrible. This includes last year’s finale when they needed to beat a Bears team that essentially had nothing to play for. And the Bears whacked him around simply because they felt like it.
Cousins changed the narrative around him a bit after the first Bears games this year, where once again the Bears sat on his head without Akiem Hicks. He threw 22 TDs and just two INTs before last week. There was some hope in Minneapolis that maybe he’d turned a corner. And then he took a big shit against the Packers on Monday night, ending the Vikes’ hopes for the division, once again puking it up against a good team, and the Vikings are left with all the same questions.
And this could be the Bears’ future. Not Cousins, of course, as he’s slotted to make all the money in the world for one more season yet. But if the Bears decide to move on from Mitch Trubisky, and that’s still a rather sizable if, they choices from there are of the same ilk of Cousins. Andy Dalton? He has the same amount of playoff wins that you do. Cam Newton? One Super Bowl appearance that he pissed down his leg in and one other playoff win where he didn’t even break 200 yards and both of those were five years ago. Teddy Bridgewater? Way more questions than answers. Phillip Rivers and his arm that was 107 years old when he was 25?
All could be steadier than Trubes, that’s for sure. And maybe steady is all the Bears need that figures to be at or near having a contender-level defense next year (especially with a healthy Hicks). But you’d be asking QBs to do things they haven’t proven they can do or haven’t done in a very long time. How’s that working out for the Vikings, who in the Cousins era will have one wildcard berth and a playoff tonking to show for it?
Bears fans should know that once you get on the QB carousel, it’s really hard to get off of it. Maybe you draft someone in the second or third round you really like and hope they just provide competition for Trubisky, thereby still keeping your QB costs down so you can have the rest of the roster in place. That’s the other thing about the names available. They’ll still cost a lot. Cousins himself has a $31M hit next year. Any of the others really coming that much cheaper?
Maybe paying $9M with reasonable competition through the draft doesn’t sound so bad here.