The Pittsburgh Steelers are among the favorites to land free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins, most recently of the Minnesota Vikings, according to odds posted on Monday by MinnesotaBets.com.
Cousins, 35, is attempting to recover from a torn Achilles suffered in late October that ended his 2023 season. Cousins said last week that he intends to be ready to play and practice for the start of Organized Team Activities, or OTAs, which start in early May.
Cousins will be a free agent after he signed a one-year contract extension worth $35 million in fully guaranteed money for the 2023 season back on March 13, 2022. He was last a free agent in 2018, when he first signed in Minnesota after being drafted by the Washington Redskins. It’s not clear the salary range that Cousins will demand this time around.
He’s been highly productive the last few seasons in Minnesota, posting four 4,000-yard seasons and four years of over a 100 passer rating in his six seasons in the Twin Cities. Though his 2023 season was cut short, he was playing some of his best football, with his 103.8 passer rating the second-highest of his career and his 63.5 QBR his fourth-highest and best since 2016.
The Steelers will likely be making at least one addition to their quarterback room to pair with former first-round pick and re-minted QB1 Kenny Pickett, but Cousins doesn’t seem like an obvious fit. Head coach Mike Tomlin said definitively last week that he believes his 2024 starting quarterback is on his roster, which would not be the case if the Steelers were willing to shell out the money to make a Cousins deal happen.
While they are likely to bring in competition for Pickett, it seems likely that the Steelers will aim lower than Cousins, who likely would want to be assured of the starting job wherever he signs.
As a result, the quarterback-needy Steelers aren’t at the top of the odds list for Cousins. MinnesotaBets.com expects that the most likely scenario is for Cousins to return to Minnesota, which has +150 odds.
As far as free agent destinations the Atlanta Falcons (+600), Denver Broncos (+700), New England Patriots and Las Vegas Raiders (+900) are at the top to the board, with the Steelers (+1,500) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1,500) just behind the field, at +1,200.