BREAKING: Vikings' QB Kirk Cousins Announces Early Retirement, Has New Partnership Deal
Minneapolis, MN – Early Friday afternoon, Kirk Cousins took to Twitter to confirm the rumors that he is in fact leaving the NFL. The star quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, informed his manager and teammates during an interview that the decision was “difficult, but necessary”. Following the sudden end to the Viking’s playoff run after being defeated by the San Francisco 49ers last Saturday evening, the decision for his early retirement came as a shock to many.
We reached out to Cousins for comment on the Tweet, and he had this to say:
“It has been in the works since the beginning of the 2019 season. I signed on to do three promotional commercials with Pizza Ranch that would air during the regular season on the Midwestern local channels. Jon Moss, the head of marketing for Pizza Ranch was willing to work with me, and I guess we just meshed really well. He had joked awhile back that I should consider doing this kind of work full time, but that was during the season, and I put it on the back burner. Once we were knocked out of the playoffs however, the reality set in that this could be a new adventure for me, so I took a chance and called Jon.”
Cousins is not the first NFL quarterback to star in national and local commercials. Green Bay Packers’ Quarterback Aaron Rodgers has starred in multiple State Farm cameos alongside new recruit Patrick Mahomes from the Kansas City Chiefs. Most notably however, would be Peyton Manning, former Quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos, who has starred in over fourteen different commercials over the years; easily making him one of the most recognizable pro athletes on television today.
“I think commercial work is great for anyone that is looking to make a smooth exit from the league,” Manning said following Cousins’ announcement. “I commend Kirk for the bravery he has shown amidst the animosity from fans and players alike. The key to starting a career in the commercial circus is to start small, and build your confidence and craft with each new gig. I think he will do just fine in the years to come.”
Others, however, did not share the same supportive reaction as Manning. Former Viking’s teammate, Adam Thielen, had some choice words for Cousins.
“I think he is being selfish. Personally, I see this sudden change in career as cowardice. Sure, we did not end the season as we wanted to, but that is the name of the game. Sunday is for football, not cactus bread.”
Alongside Thielen, former Pizza Ranch spokesman Charles Turning, was rather upset from the change of ownership as the main representative to a stand in actor during the t.v. spots.
“It’s a slap in the face,” claimed Turning. “I have given my all for this company, starring in nearly forty different t.v. commercials over the past ten years. My agent promised me that if I just stuck it out, fortune would eventually come my way and I’d be able to move from the local channels to the national level. I guess companies don’t care about experience anymore, and would rather put a famous athlete on display for their brand to rake in the notoriety…
“The same thing happened to a buddy of mine who used to be the spokesman for Chuck-E-Cheese, until Dennis Rodman came in and was willing to do the gig for half the pay just to support his hair-dye addiction. Let actors and actresses do what they do best, and keep the athletes out of the studios.”
With Cousins’ sudden announcement, Vikings’ head coach Mike Zimmer told WSYS, that he is excited for the opportunity to find a replacement in the upcoming NFL draft.
“Kirk’s decision to pursue his new career has opened up a door to new possibilities. Our offensive staff and I will look for a potential up and comer this spring. All else fails, we will pick someone up along the way and call it good.”
Being a supporter of the Vikings myself, the idea of Coach Zimmer considering a rookie quarterback to fill the starting role in the 2020 season is exciting, but highly improbable. Yet, us fans of the franchise can continue to hope that the coaching staff changes their stance on this and considers a fresh recruit to revitalize the team as a whole.
“I prayed a lot about it. Sometimes going a whole day without breaking for a meal or the bathroom,” said Cousins. “My wife is my biggest supporter, and when I brought this idea of a career change to her, she was in full support of my ultimate decision. It will be different not going back on the field next season, but overall, I think it was the best choice for myself and my family moving forward.”
Cousins’ will be touring throughout the Midwest over the next couple of months to various Pizza Ranch locations as their new spokesman. The list of locations and corresponding site visits have yet to be officially released, however, Pizza Ranch’s head of marketing Jon Moss has hinted at the possibility of the tour starting in Holland, MI to pay tribute to the former NFL quarterback’s humble beginnings and first introduction to his beloved cactus bread obsession.