Once the 2017 season is over, however, it's an open question as to where Keenum and Shurmur will be headed.
The former, a quiet MVP candidate as the improbably efficient fill-in for a quarterback room littered with ailing big names, is signed only through the remainder of Minnesota's season and will hit the open market in March. And Shurmur, the offensive coordinator behind Keenum's rise from journeyman backup to playoff starter, is either eyeing -- or being eyed for -- head coaching vacancies around the league.
With ESPN's Adam Schefter reporting this week that Keenum and Shurmur could become something of a package deal if the Vikings coordinator is hired by a "team in need of a quarterback," it's fair to wonder just where the duo would best work together.
That's assuming, of course, that Minnesota can't retain either of them. The Vikings have plenty of reason to Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater are also slated to become free agents in 2018. But reports indicate that Shurmur has already interviewed with or been targeted for interviews by the Arizona Cardinals, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and New York Giants., especially considering that both
In the event both Keenum and Shurmur depart for the same place, the Giants ring loud and clear as the sexiest market, but the Cardinals make the most sense.
New York would offer Shurmur some divisional familiarity thanks to his time with the Philadelphia Eagles (1999-2008, 2013-15), but there's also the pesky problem of sorting out an Eli Manning situation that the Giants . The offensive talent, especially at wide receiver, is also tantalizing in the Big Apple, but so is the volatility of the team's locker room, which played host to just about every distraction in the book en route to Ben McAdoo's abrupt collapse. Who's to say Keenum would even survive, let alone thrive, behind the Giants' current offensive line anyway?
In Arizona, the prospects are far more promising. First, there's a blatant need for a quarterback. Unlike in Chicago, Detroit and maybe New York, the Cardinals could definitely stand to add a veteran in 2018 now that Carson Palmer is out of the picture. And what better way to blend your guy into an offense than with a healthy David Johnson behind him? Consider, too, that Arizona still boasts plenty of long-term talent on the other side of the ball, and both Keenum and Shurmur might have the makings of the formula that helped Minnesota exceed expectations in 2017.
The NFC West is no patty-cake division, but there isn't anywhere else that invites a quarterback-coach connection quite like Arizona.