Star running back Dalvin Cook is still searching for his next NFL team.
Earlier this month, the Minnesota Vikings parted ways with the 28-year-old in a cap-saving move. By releasing Cook after June 1, the team saved $9 million in cap space but took on $5.1 million in dead money on their 2023 cap.
Whether teams should pay running backs has been a polarizing issue in the league. The New York Giants appear to be at a crossroads with their star running back, Saquon Barkley, and Derrick Henry’s future in Tennessee is unclear.
But one thing that is clear for Cook is with whom he wants to team up whenever he ends up landing for the 2023 football season.
During a recent appearance on “The Adam Schefter Podcast,” Cook discussed the possibility of lining up on the field next to fellow free agent DeAndre Hopkins.
“If we end up on the same roster, that would be something epic for the NFL,” Cook said.
The Arizona Cardinals released the 31-year-old Hopkins last month. He has since visited the Tennessee Titans and the New England Patriots, according to multiple reports.
“I know his mindset, and I done play against D-Hop a numerous amount of times,” Cook told Schefter. “When I been with D-Hop, we done chill together, we done been around each other like, and it’s like, I kind of see the person that he is like, he want to win and that’s what my mind at to.”
“I want to go win. Like I said, the money going to come and that’s going to happen. But like as far as going to lift that [Vince Lombardi] trophy up, he got the same mindset as me.”
Cook noted that he has not had a conversation with Hopkins about joining the same team, but mentioned that he planned “to reach out to” the wide receiver.
“But we haven’t talked. And he was one of those guys that I was going to reach out to, because, like, I know he got the same mindset as me, like we trying to go win. We’re trying to go on the roster and trying to go contend.”
Cook is a Florida native and is expected to draw interest from his hometown team, the Miami Dolphins, according to a recent report from Schefter.
But Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel evaded the question about Cook when it was brought up during minicamp last week.
The Vikings drafted Cook in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He dealt with a variety of injuries during the early portion of his professional football career, but he put together 1,000-yard seasons in four straight years from 2019 through 2022.
He also racked up 29 rushing touchdowns over the course of the 2019-2020 seasons.
Hopkins, meanwhile, has been named a first-team All-Pro three times. The star wideout hauled in 64 catches for 717 yards and three touchdowns last season in Arizona. He spent the first seven years of his career with the Houston Texans.
“If we can get up on the same roster and be on the same team, that will be the beauty of the situation,” Cook said.