Kevin O'Connell is busy preparing Matthew Stafford and the Rams' offense for Super Bowl LVI, but when he's finished working for Sean McVay and finalizes a deal to become the Vikings' next head coach, he won't have to think too hard about his next quarterback. Los Angeles' offensive coordinator, who's already agreed to take over Minnesota's top job, "conveyed a firm belief" in Vikings QB Kirk Cousins during the interview process, according to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, endorsing the veteran for 2022.

"He's high on him," Fowler said Monday. "(Many) coaches interviewing for (the) job liked Cousins, O'Connell included."

O'Connell, 36, previously worked with Cousins in Washington, when the former served as Cousins' QBs coach in 2017. In their lone season together, Cousins topped 4,000 passing yards and threw 27 touchdowns, parlaying his production into a fully guaranteed free agent contract with the Vikings.

The real question moving forward, of course, is whether new Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah also likes Cousins -- more specifically, whether he likes him enough to pay him the $45 million he's owed in 2022. Cousins is fresh off his third career Pro Bowl nod, throwing more than 30 TDs for the second straight year and posting his third straight QB rating above 100. But Minnesota has won just one playoff game since he arrived in 2018, and his upcoming cap hit will make him the third-most expensive QB in the NFL next season.

Unless the Vikings, who are projected to be over the 2022 cap, trim lots of salary elsewhere, their most likely scenarios with Cousins involve either trading the veteran QB or extending him on a new deal. Even due $45M in 2022, Cousins would likely have a market among QB-needy teams (the Broncos, with former Vikings exec George Paton leading the front office, come to mind). But an extension could lessen Cousins' 2022 cap hit while delaying a decision on the QB's long-term future.