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Minnesota Vikings: Cousins and Diggs get back on track against Eagles

Minnesota Vikings
Photo Credit: USA TODAY

If you didn’t know the Minnesota Vikings were dealing with drama between Kirk Cousins and Stefon Diggs, you certainly wouldn’t have known after the Vikings big win over the Philadelphia Eagles. 

Days after former Eagles linebacker Zach Brown called Cousins the “weakest part of their offense,” the quarterback responded to Brown’s comments and lit up the Philadelphia passing defense. Cousins completed 22 of 29 pass attempts with a season-high 333 yards and four touchdown passes. Cousins’ 47.48 OSM (Offensive Share Metric) grade was the highest of any quarterback in Week 6. 

“I thought we played well today. Offensively, we were explosive,” said Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer.  “We had some big plays. [Quarterback] Kirk [Cousins] played outstanding.”

An important part of Cousins’ game against the Eagles was being able to show that his stellar play in last week’s win over the New York Giants wasn’t a one-off occasion. Cousins’ performance marked the second consecutive game that he has thrown for at least 300 yards.

The most encouraging part of the big day from the Vikings offense was the performance of Diggs. After a lackluster start to the season, frustrations brewed, and trade rumors started to swirl around U.S. Bank Stadium. 

But all was forgotten after Sunday’s win. The Vikings receiver tallied a season-high seven receptions for 167 yards and three touchdowns. His 34.74 OSM grade ranked 23rd among WRs in Week 6. 

“The way the coverage played today, it gave Diggs some chances, and we missed a post at the end of the [first] half,” Cousins said. “He probably could have had four. That was there for the taking, and that ball was a little overthrown.”

With his performance, Diggs became the first Vikings receiver since Randy Moss to score three receiving touchdowns of 50 or more yards in the same game.

 
The Vikings undoubtedly have one of the premier WR groups in the NFL. With Adam Thielen on one side and Diggs on the other, the Vikings give opposing defenses a lot to handle. On the flip side, it’s difficult to get both players consistently involved and keep two receivers with number one receiver mentalities happy.
 
“I feel like [it’s] depending on the week because if it doesn’t work, we have a bad day, and the world ends,” Diggs said. “However, when things are going right, and everyone has positive energy, it’s good.” 
 
Next week might be a different story, but for now, the Vikings take a step in the right direction towards a potential playoff berth. A win at home against an Eagles team that has been in the playoffs the last two years is a step in the right direction.
 
According to ESPN, the Vikings Playoff Probability Leverage (the team’s chances of reaching the playoffs with a win versus their chances following a loss) was 26%, which was tied with the Los Angeles Rams for the highest in the NFC. 
 
Behind big performances from Cousins and Diggs, the Vikings now sit at 4-2 and are undefeated at home. If they can continue to build off of this, there’s no question the Vikings will be a serious contender in the NFC.  
 
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