Sportress of Blogitude

Kirk Cousins eager to take on leadership role with Vikings but won’t force it

Kirk Cousins on Tuesday participated in a team workout with his new Minnesota Vikings teammates. Fresh off signing a three-year, fully guaranteed $84 million deal earlier this offseason, Cousins recognizes such a huge payday comes with enormous expectations. But that won’t inspire the 29-year-old signal-caller to force anything, especially when it comes to taking on a leadership role with the Vikings.

“If it’s forced, it’s not genuine,” Cousins, who has already worked out on the side with some of his teammates, said Tuesday, via the Star Tribune. “It’s just a process. You understand that the very first day, you’re more like a rookie, and that’s OK. If you keep coming in here with the right attitude, the right mind-set, take it home and spend time getting better, over time, the leader comes out, the personality comes out and you’ll be ready to go.”

Cousins also welcomes the tremendous pressure entailed from arriving on a team already boasting built-in Super Bowl aspirations. Cousins’ presence only ramps up the expectation of success.

“It is what it is. I don’t want to be on a team with low expectations, do I?” Cousins said. “I think that it’s a part of playing in this league; there’s pressure on everybody, and it would be immature for us to focus on the expectations. … If we do our job each and every day and have the best [organized team activities] we can have, then the results that everyone is looking to see and care about in the fall will take care of themselves.”

Cousins of course arrives to a Vikings team loaded on both sides of the ball. Boasting among the top two or three defenses in the league, along with some real talent at the skill positions on offense — highlighted by wideouts Stefon Diggs, Adam Thielen, running back Dalvin Cook and tight end Kyle Rudolph — the onus will be on Cousins to produce right out of the gates.

Whether Cousins is up to the challenge remains to be seen. But there’s no doubt he’s set for success in Minnesota.