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Minnesota Vikings will reportedly sign QB Sam Darnold after Kirk Cousins leaves for Atlanta Falcons

Mixed emotions from Vikings fans on Kirk Cousins news
Mixed emotions from Vikings fans on Kirk Cousins news 03:19

MINNEAPOLIS — It didn't take long for the Minnesota Vikings to seek out a replacement quarterback after Kirk Cousins signed with the Atlanta Falcons.

The NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports the Vikings will sign Sam Darnold to a one-year deal worth up to $10 million.

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Darnold is a former first-round pick who flamed out with the New York Jets, was traded to the Carolina Panthers and spent last season as a backup to Brock Purdy in San Francisco. The 26-year-old has thrown 63 touchdowns and 56 interceptions in his career.

Darnold is a significant step down from Cousins, but is still young and has starting experience. He could serve as a bridge quarterback should the Vikings choose to take a young passer in the upcoming draft.

The Vikings' current quarterbacks coach is Josh McCown, who was Darnold's teammate in New York.

According to agent Mike McCartney, Cousins will sign a four-year deal with the Falcons. The NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported the deal is worth up to $180 million, with $100 million guaranteed. Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah said Monday that "Kirk holds a special place in Vikings history."

"Our approach heading into free agency always included layers of contingencies regarding the quarterback position," Adofo-Mensah said. "We are moving forward with plans that allow us to continue building a roster that can compete for a championship."

The Vikings focused mostly on defense on the first day of the negotiating window, reportedly agreeing to deals with edge rusher Jonathan Greenard and linebackers Andrew Van Ginkel and Blake Cashman.

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