Vikings leadership to be ‘division of labor’ in 2024

The Minnesota Vikings didn’t just lose three really good football players in quarterback Kirk Cousins, inside linebacker Jordan Hicks and edge rusher Danielle Hunter. They also lost three captains and leaders on the football team.

When you lose captains, there become holes on your roster that need to be filled and sometimes they get filled in unique ways. It can be a new player coming into the fold like a quarterback or a true team mentality.

This year, the Vikings leadership will be a shared responsibility, something that defensive lineman Harrison Phillips called a “division of labor.”

“To ask one person to fill that void (Cousins left) is probably not probable. So what we’re going to do is have a great leadership team, which we’ve already seen. There’s already guys that I’ve seen these last few seasons being on this roster — some are captains, some are not captains yet but will be in their careers — and so we’re going to pass that torch off and kind of division of labor. We’re going to all carry that load together, and maybe we can be a better football team for it.

“Kirk’s obviously amazing. I’ve learned a lot from him and the leadership side of thing, and that’s an area I’m trying to step up and improve my game by working on those abilities.”

It’s an interesting choice to prioritize the sharing of leadership duties. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing as each locker room environment is a different beast. There are many ways to lead and all of them can be successful in their own way.

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Will this work for the Vikings? That much remains to be seen, but the approach will be interesting to see over the next year.

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