According to ESPN's Total QBR metric — which attempts to assign a value to a quarterback's overall contribution to games and seasons — Kirk Cousins was the second-best QB in the NFC North. But the overall order of quarterbacks in the division is not what you would imagine. Here is their ranking:
Mitchell Trubisky, Bears: No. 3.
Kirk Cousins, Vikings: No. 14.
Aaron Rodgers, Packers: No. 16.
Matthew Stafford, Lions: No. 22.
So yeah, the second-year QB who has taken his share of heat was third in the NFL in that metric. The other three veteran, highly paid guys were mediocre.
Cousins was good in the passing department, coming in at No. 9 in clutch-weighted expected points added on passes. But he was dead last out of 33 qualified QBs in run points added after being a respectable No. 16 in 2017 with Washington. Cousins not being able to make plays with his feet was a big disappointment this year.
Read Michael Rand's blog at startribune.com/randball. firstname.lastname@example.org.