Vikings offense takes flight behind an aggressive Kirk Cousins


Seattle Seahawks v Minnesota Vikings

Photo: Getty Images North America

A few weeks ago it felt as if the Vikings season was already spiraling out of control. In their last two performances the offense has started to take more shots downfield to their elite playmakers, and it’s paid off to say the least. 

The dynamic duo of Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen have helped open the playbook for first-year OC Klint Kubiak. In what’s been a bumpy ride of a season, it’s starting to feel as if Kubiak and his veteran quarterback are starting to take more chances. 

Kirk Cousins has been good all season, but his lack of aggressiveness has been a topic of discussion since his arrival in Minnesota. After a 34-31 shootout against the Green Bay Packers, Vikings fans should hope that the aggressive playstyle is here to stay. 

Over the last two weeks Cousins has put on a show and taken down two high-powered offenses. He’s completed 68 percent of his passes for 635 yards, five touchdowns and zero interceptions against the Packers and Chargers.

Now, there certainly could have been a couple balls picked off in the matchup with Green Bay, but at the same time I think that’s exactly what Cousins has needed. He’s always been willing to take shots down the field, but you can tell he’s letting it rip more as of late. 

Putting faith in wide receivers is important for any quarterback in the NFL, but it’s something that should be easier to do when there’s two alphas on the roster. In the above clip, Cousins has pressure in his face and throws the ball off his back foot. This doesn’t always end well but having a top-five receiver like Jefferson who can adjust when the ball is in the air only helps his chances. 

This recipe has worked for two consecutive weeks against two likely playoff teams. Cousins is quietly putting together his best season as a pro and it’s time to give credit where credit is due. 

The Vikings signal caller is currently on pace to throw for 4,717 yards, 35 touchdowns and four interceptions. If Cousins can finish with a stat line like this, along with playing more aggressive for the remainder of the season, there’s no reason the Vikings couldn’t make some noise in the playoff conversation.

If the stats aren’t enough, maybe we should look at the amount of comeback wins Cousins has helped spark in 2021. The comeback against Green Bay marked his third of the season, with a couple more that were botched by a fumble and a missed field goal.

While Cousins has drawn criticism in years past for his “lack” of performance in critical moments, this year he’s played some of his best football in the final five minutes of multiple games.

The Vikings desperately needed a spark after the deflating loss to Baltimore and Cousins has provided that with the help of the best receiving duo in the NFL. The stats have always been there, but the aggressiveness will only make this offense stronger moving forward.

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