The Vikings went into the preseason with three quarterbacks on the roster — starter Kirk Cousins, veteran Sean Mannion, and second-year passer Kellen Mond.
Cousins was [and still is] the unquestioned starter and leader of the Vikings. He’s never encountered a team with 12 or more wins, so he is probably enjoying the season. The Vikings will host at least one postseason game in January. The evaluation of Cousins’ season is an interesting case. Some think he’s playing worse than in the past; others believe he magically turned into a machine, especially in the clutch.
His backup job was up in the air, though. Kevin O’Connell was supposed to be a quarterback whisperer when the Vikings hired him as head coach. That’s why most folks believed in Mond to win the QB2 job. However, in the preseason, Mond looked shaky and unprepared to step on an NFL field. The backup QB job is one of the most important on the team because he has stepped up on the most important position on the field if the starter can’t go.
3 Weeks Ago a Viking — to Starting QB for ARI
Mannion looked like he always does — a boring quarterback without any upside. Last year’s game against the Packers showed that the Vikings couldn’t win games with him under center.
The Vikings ended up cutting both quarterbacks. Mannion is now on the practice squad in Seattle, and Mond is on the roster in Cleveland with former Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski.
Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah had enough of not having a capable QB2, so he traded a seventh-round pick for Nick Mullens to the Raiders. Mullens has starting experience in the league and is a solid backup.
Without Mond and Mannion on the team, the Vikings had to pick up a different quarterback for their practice squad. Most teams employ two passers on the active roster and a third on the practice squad.
The Vikings signed David Blough, a former Detroit Lions quarterback. He was cut from the Lions on the final cutdown day. Blough started a handful of games in 2019, all five games were losses, and he had more interceptions than touchdowns.
When Arizona’s star quarterback Kyler Murray tore his ACL a couple of weeks ago, the Cardinals signed Blough as a backup. Their other options were Colt McCoy, a career backup. He started in place of Murray last season, so he was the no-brainer to fill in.
However, he suffered a concussion. In Week 16, third-stringer Trace McSorley started, but he is not a quarterback that should be on an NFL field at this stage in his career.
Blough is getting the nod over his teammates to start in Week 17 against the Falcons. While that game is meaningless for the Vikings, the Week 18 matchup with the 49ers is essential. If the Vikings lose one of the final two season games, the 49ers have to lose one game as well, so the Vikings stay in the number two seed. Maybe the former Viking can help the Vikings.
Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt