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Kirk Cousins further divides Vikings Fan Base at Pro Bowl

Cause of Course he Did

With the regular season ending a couple of weekends ago, you’d think that we’d all be able to relax and watch the most pointless of NFL exhibitions (I’m using that word in multiple ways) that is the Pro Bowl without, yet again, getting pulled back into the vat of exhaustive nonsense (which is coincidentally the name we’re giving our new message board! Click here to register!) that is the Kirk Cousins debate as to whether or not he’s the best thing that ever happened to Minnesota or some sort of jugs machine that was missing a few vital screws in a Pro Bowl jersey.

If you’ve spent any time on this site or, or looked in that closet in my room NO ONE is allowed to open, you’ll know that I’ve been one of those people that… I was going to say defends Cousins but I don’t think that’s the proper way to put it. I’ll say, instead (and whatever the opposite of the word ‘sans’ is), that I’m one of those people that realize the following about Cousins:

There’s a difference between online debates and reality

What do I mean by that? Mostly that, on the internet (and in politics, clearly) people tend to either take or end up arguing from two ends of the most extreme realities of a subject. Either Cousins is the best thing since sliced ham (I know the phrase is ‘sliced bread’ but who gets excited about sliced bread? Outside of the Amish, but they don’t read this so I don’t need to cater to them (anymore)), or he’s the worst QB in the league!

Football, like life, doesn’t work that way. There’s nuance to everything and that’s why no one ever thinks that they’re wrong because of course there are exceptions to both extremes.

If you think he’s the best people can copy and paste PFF stats, if you think he’s the worst people can show you the same.

Instead, the answer falls in the same area most women point to when I ask them what about my body is so off-putting, somewhere in the middle.

So, let’s break this down one more time.

As, I’ve talked about this A LOT.

Need proof? Or want to catch up on the emotional/mental roller coaster that was my 2019-20 season?

Win in New Orleans Proves Signing Cousins was the RIGHT Move

Gary Kubiak: The QB Whisperer and his Influence on this Explosive Vikings Offense

Was Denver Cousins’ Best Game? Does it Matter?

From “YOU LIKE THAT” to it just doesn’t happen like that; Cousins has Proven he was the Right Choice for the Vikings 

Is Cousins the MVP? Does it Matter? 

Has Cousins Earned an Extension? 

In Retrospect, Was Cousins’ Contract a Bargain? 

He’s the best chance this Vikings team has to win before 2023

The co-host of my Podcast, Morning Joes, said something that should seem obvious to everyone who pay attention to the NFL, but that was poignant enough to stick in my brains since. He said, essentially, that the Vikings are always either around mediocre or good (which we all know as they’re one of the franchises with the best winning percentages in the league), and because of that they’re never bad enough to land a really high draft pick (2012 notwithstanding).-

That’s been the case, especially, during the Zimmer era. While that may seem like a defense of Zimmer, you could have said the same about Denny Green, or Flip Saunders with the Timberwolves (granted he didn’t have first-round draft picks, at all, for a stretch), but as we remember with them, at some point simply being good during the regular season doesn’t cut it.

The reason I bring it up in this context is because the Vikings will have a first-round pick, barring some sort of nigh impossible trade up ( as it’d take way too much draft capital and that’d never happen as we all know Spielman loves him his fifteen 7th-round picks), in the low 20’s in 2020. This means that unless they spend that pick on a quarterback that somehow bucks the trend of this franchise (under Spielman and really, in my entire life) swinging and missing on QB’s, this team is essentially stuck with Cousins.

This isn’t the post-2017 NFC Championship game where the Vikings can spend their way beyond their draft futility. They’re strapped for cash (coincidentally like me in 2017), and as we saw when Cousins broke the NFL contract model, QBs of Cousins’ ilk don’t just become free agents that often, and any that might will cost a lot more than Cousins did, also thanks to that deal.

The Never Cousins-ers have no solution as to who they’d replace him with. Or, rather, who they’d replace him with that could execute the offense on the same level that he did in the 10-games the Vikings won this season (over 30 points-per-game). Of course, simply having no replacement for a bad player doesn’t mean you should keep that bad player, but Cousins isn’t bad. He isn’t even mediocre. The offense with him, rather isn’t.

Case in point, the Vikings also lost 6 games in the regular season and they put up 17.3 points per game in those contests. That’s not normal. It’s not normal for a QB to put up MVP-level numbers and then to simply be unable to move the chains. There has to be something else going on.

Doesn’t it make more sense to think that, maybe, because the Vikings offensive line ended 27th in regards to pass protection in 2019, that perhaps that had something to do with it? How about the play calling? Again, that doesn’t mean Cousins is perfect, but it’s the job of the coaches to get the most out of their players and clearly, when he’s used correctly Cousins can make this offense hum.

So, I’d put that squarely on the shoulders of the now/thankfully no longer with the team Kevin Stefanski and the 27th-ranked offensive line. Cousins is bad under pressure, yes. But, again, if you knew that as a coach or executive, wouldn’t that make investing in the line the top priority after signing him?

Or maybe running the types of plays or game plans that have worked?

I know it’s not that simple. But, when your offensive coordinator has zero answers when the opposing team schemes to blow up your pocket or to limit bootlegs, I guess, he gets a head coaching gig?

This article I wrote explains my thoughts on that.

Point being. Kubiak’ll fix it!

Sure, Cousins is culpable as well. That’s how football works. But it’s clear that when you give him time he can execute with the best QB’s in the league and I feel A LOT more confident in the Vikings shoring up the left side of that line in the draft than them, again, somehow finding a QB who can take over this franchise and execute like Cousins has shown in large enough stretches for it to be statistically significant.

But this article was about the Pro Bowl.

So, here’s some clips, since you guys will make up your own minds anyway:

The Good (I thought this guy couldn’t create?)

The Bad…

Cousins also fumbled.

He also had 181 yards and two touchdown passes on the day.

Oh, and just a heads up.

It was the Pro Bowl.

Agree with me? Think I’m bananers?

Let us know in the message board in the comments! Registering is free, easy, and satisfying, like stealing a tweens Halloween candy (which, I want you to know, it was never proven in a court of law I did).

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Joe Johnson

Joe Johnson started back in 2015 & in 2019, and purchased before the 2017-18 season , used to write for and is the host of the ’Morning Joes’ & ‘About the Labor’ Podcasts, as well. Follow on Twitter: @vtPTSD

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  1. I cannot I understand the hate that Kirk Cousins
    generates! Take a look at his numbers vs
    other household name QBs!!! Ones that actually
    have offensive lines that don’t get thrown
    around like rag dolls when facing D-lines like
    GB CHI or Phil or San Fran!!! 30 TDs a while
    back and 4200 yds with a line worse than
    this present one!! I am glad
    Stephanski is gone also but part of his problem was the Oline also! I lost faith when
    in NO
    he broke rythmn (in middle of a very well
    executed drive) with a nonsensical reverse!
    Ever notice those things either work or
    are a complete failure!!! Come on where
    was the “flea flicker” with a guy like cook
    who has to be keyed on!!!

  2. Also didn’t a Superbowl OC get canned a while
    back because he could not run more more with
    a horrible line? So cousins had those great numbers with no running game!!! What a feat!!!

  3. Cousins takes the blame for everyone else’s failures. So if I am a player or a coach on the Vikings team, I’d definitely want to keep him around. We can just kind of sit back and relax and do whatever we want and not have to worry about accountability. And no, all highly paid quarterbacks do not take this type blame. Look how bad Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers looked in the playoffs when facing a legitimate pass rush. But somehow the Vikings lost to the 49ers because Cousins didn’t “show up.”

    With that said, Cousins needs to hold onto the damn football and stop fumbling. That way you don’t have to worry about stirring up all of this nonsense. And he needs to learn to just throw the ball away when justified instead of trying to make a play. Still, I believe all of this, along with an upgrade on the offensive line is much easier to fix and then succeed than it would be to expect a rookie or some other team’s unwanted garbage to produce at Cousins level.

    A lot of Vikings fans, hilariously, think that instead of fixing the offensive line, the solution is to go out and get a “mobile quarterback” so he can run for his life the entire game.

  4. Nothing that happens in a Pro Bowl game is fodder for any positive or negative reflection on the players. The game is played at half speed, and *everyone* has the primary goal of not getting hurt. Playing well is not even on the list of priorities. With that stated, we should spend every draft pick, and every available dollar on the O-Line. Hell put 25 O-Line on our roster, and let them play D-Line, Fullback, DE, receiver as well…

  5. I agree Redskin well said!!
    He was a very good teammate when our receivers started whining!!! I would like to
    see Rodgers put up with that!!! If we get rid
    of cousins we will be so sorry! Compare cousins numbers to America’s darlings
    Brese Brady !!!! I think he is like Tarkenton
    because he is good despite bad situations!!

  6. Cousins numbers look better than his performance because most of his passes against any team that even tweets about bringing pressure are for five yards and the receivers puts all the yards on after the catch. cousins has a problem with under over and high throwing the receiver but good receivers make him look alot better than he is. Remember culpepper? Everyone was saying he’s great until moss was gone then everyone seen he was terrible but moss made him look good. Cousins has no field vision or extremely slow field vision because he misses more wide open receivers than any qb I’ve seen since Christian ponder…. that’s a 84million dollar truth

  7. Well all of the experts say he is very accurate.
    How about the throw to Theilen(a small target)
    in New Orleans!?? I say we get some more
    Oline . Maybe even convert Joseph to a guard?
    He is pretty agile for a big guy!! The thing
    about Cousins numbers and also Keenum
    Cousins is esteemed by some as the best
    long ball thrower out there! And our receivers
    don’t miss anyone !!!

  8. I will admit one thing he (cousins) holds on to
    the ball too long and sometimes gets locked
    into receivers and takes fumbles and sacks!!
    Part of the anti cousins crusade is all of us
    Vikings cannot take the humiliation of
    being a Viking Fan!!! You younger guys don’t
    know how bad it has been!!!
    After the M. miracle Philadelphia trashed us!!
    In 2009 Farve was hit late the whole game!!
    Refs never called anything!
    A bad PI call killed us !!

    Someone always has to be the sacrificial lamb!
    Today cousins back then Farve!!

  9. Cousins needs better protection & less predictable play calling. I would like to see more max protection schemes with both a guard & Ham in the backfield to give him all the time he wants to go downfield.

  10. I agree qckappa. Love our fullback. Hope we
    can hold on to him! I saw one of the teams
    out there was having success with our former
    fb Zach Line. Speaking of predictability
    something you never see anymore is the
    halfback option pass. Whatever happened to

  11. Kirk is the only QB in the NFL who could get sacked or knocked down over ten times in the Pro Bowl where they don’t even tackle. Throws a awesome Deep Ball though.

  12. He has great numbers I agree. But he still has very few Wins against teams over 500. He struggles bad against the Bears and Packers. That wont fly in Minnesota. Let him go somewhere else and be great if you really believe that.