EAGAN, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings and Kirk Cousins will start their franchise-altering contract negotiations on the same page.

Cousins has said repeatedly that he hopes to finish his career in Minnesota, and Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah reiterated with his strongest language yet Wednesday that he wants the quarterback to return.

"I think I've been pretty consistent with that," Adofo-Mensah said. "I thought we were was playing pretty good football before he got injured [in Week 8]. It's the most important position in sports. Now, ultimately it always comes down to, 'Can you find an agreement that works for all sides,' and all those things. But as a player, it's certainly my intention to have him back here."

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Cousins was tied for the NFL lead in touchdown passes (18) and ranked second in passing yards (2,331) when he ruptured his right Achilles tendon Oct. 29 against the Green Bay Packers. He will turn 36 in August but is expected to recover in time to possibly participate in some late-spring workouts.

Cousins said Monday he has thought deeply about the possibility of a "hometown discount" but added that the "structure" of his next contract was paramount, a likely reference to the multiyear guarantees he has received in all three of his previous contracts with the Vikings.

Asked about the possibility of giving Cousins a contract that is guaranteed into 2025 or beyond, Adofo-Mensah said: "At the end of the day, you're just taking risks. We'll try to measure it the best we can to protect ourselves and ensure against it, and on his side, he's trying to take less risks. That's his job. They should do that. We'll try to find a place in the middle and see where we end up."

Cousins' contract, which paid him $30 million last season, will automatically void if he is still on the roster in late February, according to language in the deal. That means the Vikings will not be able to use the franchise tag to keep him from entering free agency.