Kirk Cousins is earning his money

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The Vikings made a bold move in the offseason, swapping a trio of starting-caliber quarterbacks for former Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins and his three-year, $84 million deal.

So far, Cousins is earning every penny.

Sure, the Vikings have won only two of five games. Yes, the defense isn’t the dominant unit it has been in the past. Obviously, the running game is nearly non-existent.

But Cousins is making the passing game go, in his first year of working with coordinator John DeFilippo, receiver Stefon Diggs, receiver Adam Thielen, and tight end Kyle Rudolph.

As the Vikings returned on Sunday to the site of their NFC title-game loss to the Eagles, Cousins fueled the upset win over the defending Super Bowl champions, completing 30 of 37 passes for 301 yards and a touchdown.

The 30-completion effort made Cousins the first quarterback in league history to complete at least 30 passes in four straight games.

Cousins, who completed 35 passes in Week 2, 40 passes in Week 3 and 36 passes in Week 4, is the first player in NFL history to complete at least 30 passes in four consecutive games. ​

For the year, Cousins has completed 161 of 226 passes (71.2 percent) for 1,688 yards (7.5 per attempt). He has 11 touchdowns and two interceptions, and a passer rating of 109.6. He’s on pace to throw for 5,401 yards for the season.

57 responses to “Kirk Cousins is earning his money

  1. This was said of Kirk Cousins last June:

    skolol says:
    June 14, 2018 at 11:46 am

    4th best QB in the division.

  2. Kirks been a pleasant surprise. I figured he would be a slight upgrade. Been awhile since we have had a dominant pass game. Its fun!

  3. The Redskins were foolish to push away one of the top five QBs in the NFL. And they got nothing in return (OK, a 3rd round comp pick–big deal).

    Cousins has played his entire career on a team with no legitimate running game and a bottom 10 defense. Then in their wisdom the Redskins let go of their two decent wide receivers. Cousins carried that team with little help. And when the Redskins didn’t win, the clueless fans blamed the QB. A lot of the press was down on him too, ignoring the circumstances.

    The Vikings don’t have a running game right now and their oline is a mess. But they’ve got some great targets for Cousins. The Vikings defense has to start playing better and they’ve got to get the running game going. Making field goals would be a big boost too. If that happens, Cousins and the Vikings are going to be unstoppable.

  4. For years Alex Smith’s stats were used to justify his greatness! Then he was replaced by a rookie, and we found out Alex had been fooling us for all those years. Yes, numbers do lie, and Cousins will never win anything other than a game here and a game there. Minnesota can keep him.

  5. Way to go Snyder. Your list of screw ups keeps growing and growing. Moves like this explain all those empty seats at Fed Ex.

  6. What you’re saying can’t be right. I was told repeatedly over the offseason that Cousins was the fourth-best quarterback in the division, can’t beat a winning team, has never won a playoff game, was the main reason his teams lose games, and that the Vikings should have kept Case Keenum.

  7. In the first few games, he had a couple of moments where he looked shaky. But, he had more moments where he dropped in some incredible passes into very tight windows. I would take anything in the first few games as growing pains getting used to the offense, and also used to the pressure he will face with a somewhat suspect OL. In the last couple of games, he has been more inclined to get the throws out and not look as ready to run. The team will have protection issues all season, but he may be getting more used to where and when he will see that pressure, and which guys he may be able to trust a little bit to hold just strong enough that he can get the pass out before getting hit.

  8. Many have questioned whether the Vikings should have kept (insert Bradford, Bridgewater and or Keenum here).

    Those three signed elsewhere for a total of $43,000,000.00.

    Cousins has outperformed all three, by a large margin.

    It was the right decision.

  9. skolol says:
    June 14, 2018 at 11:46 am

    4th best QB in the division.

    ___________________________________

    Through 5 games in 2018:

    Cousins: 161/226, 71.2%, 1688 yards, 11 TDs, 2 int, 105.1 rating
    Rodgers: 131/208, 63.0%, 1572 yards, 10 TDs, 1 int, 100.1 rating
    Trubisky: 91/130, 70.0%, 945 yards, 8 TDs, 3 int, 101.6 rating
    Stafford: 126/191, 66%, 1385 yards, 10 TDs, 5 int, 93.8 rating

    Through 5 games, Cousins is actually the BEST QB in the division, and possibly playing behind the worst offensive line in the division.

    LOL!

  10. If guys like Eli or Flacco don’t inspire, then at least they prove that you don’t need a first ballot HOFer. An arm that can get the ball downfield and a brain that can do more than manage the game is all you can hope for out of a franchise quarterback, and less than 32 players can do even that. Hard to believe that Washington gave him up.

  11. He can put monster stats but when game in the line you have to close your eyes . Vikings could easily be 1-3 . The game vs the 49ers smith sealed that game . Wasnt kirk

  12. Chiefs and Vikings seem to finally have good passing games after years and years looking for one. they deserve it. they both have seen some horrendous QB play over the decades.

  13. The big problem Kirk has is fumbles, but he really got ripped off in the stats department yesterday. They gave him credit for the fumble when Roc Thomas dropped the lateral, apparently because he was the last guy to actually have control of the ball. They have to change the way they credit fumbles.

  14. I love the way Cousins is playing. But, if he throws for 5400 yards this year, The Vikings will finish 8-7-1 and will be home for the playoffs. This team is struggling to find balance on both sides of the ball. The O-Line has benefited from the return of Pat Elflin, but the fact that the front office ignored the o-line in the off season and the inconsistent play from the defense will be that tale of the tape for the Vikings 2018 season.

  15. Can’t blame the losses on Kirk. That Buffalo game even. OL had a melt down in that one and it gave Kirk no time. I have been totally impressed with Kirk against decent defenses. Vikings have not faced Jaguars yet but I believe Kirk could handle that just fine. The OL has been horrendous so far and Kirk is still performing under those grim circumstances. Anyone that rips Kirk now is obviously delusional. Kirk also has the best WR duo in the NFL but they need Kirk like he needs them.

  16. Keep passing to set up the run. Eventually teams will keep 2 safeties back and the run game will start to improve, IF that line starts to move people just a bit. Hill is horrible! O’Neill looks the part and plays with some attitude. Let him learn on the job. Get rid of Sendejo!!! I’ve said for 4 years, he’s the worst safety in football, next to Chris Conte. Dude does nothing for the deep pass game. NOTHING!! Iloka should barge into Zimmers office and ask to be released if he won’t play him. Shame he sits for that worthless POS Sendejo.

  17. I wonder why everyone criticizing this deal and claiming keeping Case Keenum was the better mover aren’t saying anything now.

    As a Redskins fan I practically went blue in the face trying to explain to naysayers how good Cousins actually was. Last year when all his receiving threats were injured or traded away, the offensive line was injured, and our running game was non existent for the majority of the season Cousins was our entire offense. He put up big numbers even then. But beyond the stats I just saw him making play after play after play.

    Actually Cousin’s projector is similar to Drew Brees. Don’t laugh even though Brees had the higher profile coming into the league his play at the beginning of his career was shaky enough that the team went out and drafted Eli Manning 1st overall and traded hime for 4th overall pick Philip Rivers. In other words the Chargers didn’t think Brees was going to work out. But a funny thing happened in that Brees got good enough to be a good quslity starter yet the Chargers still let him walk because they had a high pick in Rivers who they believed in on the Bench. The shoulder injury Brees suffered his last Chargers game didnt help but the team was ready to move on from him anyways.

    Brees then signed a huge contact from the Saints and took his game from a pretty good QB to top 5 all pro QB. After watching Cousins growth on the Redskins I believe he can do the same. He is as accurate as anyone, has cut down on the boneheaded mistakes he made earlier in his career and if you actually watch him instead of listening to the talking heads can make all the throws needed to be a franchise QB. I expect monster numbers from him during his Vikings tenure.

  18. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    October 8, 2018 at 11:03 am
    For years Alex Smith’s stats were used to justify his greatness! Then he was replaced by a rookie, and we found out Alex had been fooling us for all those years. Yes, numbers do lie, and Cousins will never win anything other than a game here and a game there. Minnesota can keep him.
    ——————————
    And we fully plan on it. People have undervalued Cousins his entire career. You said stats lie, well you may be right on that. Given a team that has weapons for him and believes in him, Cousins is actually better than what his stats have shown.

  19. billzbubb says:
    October 8, 2018 at 11:00 am
    _______________________________________________________________________________
    The Redskins were foolish to push away one of the top five QBs in the NFL. And they got nothing in return (OK, a 3rd round comp pick–big deal).

    Cousins has played his entire career on a team with no legitimate running game and a bottom 10 defense. Then in their wisdom the Redskins let go of their two decent wide receivers. Cousins carried that team with little help. And when the Redskins didn’t win, the clueless fans blamed the QB. A lot of the press was down on him too, ignoring the circumstances.

    ________________________________________________________________________________

    I agree that it was a bad decision on the WRs, but I don’t blame them for not paying Kirk 28 million+ a year. A lot of the criticism was justified. The problem with Kirk when he was with the Skins was his inconsistency. He would have a game where he’d put up 400 yards and 3 TDs. Then he’d have a game the following week where he’d throw 2 ints and lose a fumble. Every QB will have a bad game once in a while, but it seemed to be too frequent with Kirk. He’s already displayed this behavior with the Vikings. In the GB game, he put up great stats, but the next game he turned the ball over 3 times, with 1 int and two fumbles. He fumbled three times but lost two of them.

    He put up great stats between the 20s, but he was one of the worst in the redzone when he was with the Redskins. That’s why his yearly stats with the Skins would end up with 4000-4800 yards but under 30 TDs. Lots of passing yards, with average TD numbers.

    These bad games almost always occurred against division opponents like the Giants and Cowboys. For some reason, when he was with the Redskins, he usually played decent against the Eagles, with the exception of last year’s game.

    Hopefully for the Vikings sake, he improves on the flaws he had in Washington, but Kirk as a starter in Washington made the team around 8-8ish, which is now pretty much the Vikings record.

  20. “Earning his money?”

    What a bunch of rubbish! Had it not been for an easy pick 6 by a lumbering Linval Joseph who waddled into the end zone, the Queens would have lost. Would Cousins have earned his money then?

  21. Hmmm, .500 record. Seems to me they started a little batter than that last year. Cousins is one of those QBs with nice stats with nothing to show for it. Furthermore, if not for 2 phantom BS roughing the passer calls, the Vikings are 1-4.

  22. vikesfan says:
    October 8, 2018 at 10:54 am

    This was said of Kirk Cousins last June:

    skolol says:
    June 14, 2018 at 11:46 am

    4th best QB in the division.
    **********************
    It was true then, it’s quite likely true now.

    You can’t judge it based on just these four games, and realize he’s playing with Rodgers, Trubisky and Stafford, so until he does something more than complete 30 passes with a 2-5 record, he’s still likely the 4th best QB in the division.

  23. Florio actually saying something positive about the Vikings??
    I’m going to jot this date down….. Oct. 8th, 2018 ….a date that shall live in infamy!

  24. bondlake says:
    October 8, 2018 at 11:51 am
    “Earning his money?”
    What a bunch of rubbish! Had it not been for an easy pick 6 by a lumbering Linval Joseph who waddled into the end zone, the Queens would have lost. Would Cousins have earned his money then?
    _____________________________
    Swap the 2 missed FG’s, not Kirk’s fault, for the pick 6 and YES, they would still have won by a point. So the answer is..YES.

  25. “What a bunch of rubbish! Had it not been for an easy pick 6 by a lumbering Linval Joseph who waddled into the end zone, the Queens would have lost. Would Cousins have earned his money then?”
    ——————————————————–
    I wasn’t aware those kind of plays didn’t count. So, should we go thru the past and erase victories and revaluate QBs whose teams benefited from remarkable turnovers, defensive plays, special teams play, etc?

    I guess Brady shouldn’t have won that Super Bowl and MVP award then because Butler made that remarkable INT, huh?! If he couldn’t have led his team to victory without that play….then who needs him!

  26. Why does everyone play the if game? What might have been does not mean would have been. No basis in reality thinking.

  27. Juve Duran says:
    October 8, 2018 at 11:15 am

    He can put monster stats but when game in the line you have to close your eyes . Vikings could easily be 1-3 . The game vs the 49ers smith sealed that game . Wasnt kirk
    __________

    The game was on the line the whole game. He also led the 55-yard field goal drive in the fourth quarter that iced it. Looked pretty good to me. Congratulations on Smith beating the 1-4 49ers.

  28. tinye67 says:
    October 8, 2018 at 12:03 pm
    I wonder why it’s so hard for some people to admit that Cousins is a pretty good QB?!

    ——————————-

    I’m with you I don’t get it either. I was a fan of him on the Redskins especially the last couple years. I think in addition to his football skills he seems like a great guy and a very good leader. People can say what they want, I’m glad he is my favorite teams QB. If you haven’t seen his pregame speech yesterday do yourself a favor and go view it. Note to OBJ that is what a leader looks like.

  29. Too many OCs in the league are going away from their play makers in the red zone. Diggs and Thielen get them all the way down there then it turns into the Ham, Rock and Treadwell show.

  30. Hope they enjoy 8-8 with their guaranteed contract. Oh, wait they’ve already got a tie, so 8-7-1 instead!

  31. Between the talent(lack of) and losing Sporano this line looks awful. All the push is caving in and not going out. This corner Hughes look like he has potential but not taking the guard Will Hernandez looks like a major blunder. Hard to be exited with this line and how easy the D looks to move the ball on so far.

  32. tinye67 says:
    October 8, 2018 at 12:03 pm
    I wonder why it’s so hard for some people to admit that Cousins is a pretty good QB?!

    ——————————-
    Cousins is the complete package, he has everything needed to be an elite quarterback, but he also has a bizarre propensity for losing. His ability to lose games is just as astonishing as his PA boot. Against the Rams the other week, he played a near perfect game, and was set to march down the field on a game winning drive-> strip sack fumble. I don’t know whether his high school field was on top of an ancient burial ground, or he beat gypsy in his fantasy football league, but even when it’s not fault, he loses. Whether it’s a bad snap, or a receiver falling down, leading to a 4th quarter pick, Kirk finds a way. Just as Tebow was the best worst quarterback of all time, Cousins is the worst best.

  33. packertruth says:
    October 8, 2018 at 2:27 pm
    Ryan Fitzpatrick qb rating 114.4 on $3 million salary.
    ___________________________________________________________________________-

    Maybe the Pack should have signed Fitzmagic

  34. I guarantee that at no time in Kirk’s interview with the Vikings did they say, “oh do you have the ability to absorb a karate chop from a 6’5. 270 lb man while holding the ball up in a quick throw stance?”
    Fumbles my foot.
    Talk about how Kirk unleashes laser strikes an instant before absorbing a crushing hit because he’s got the value ready to fire. You armchair analysts would rather he hug the ball while enveloped for a 10 yard sack loss so he doesn’t get the occasional “fumble”.

  35. packertlies says:

    Ryan Fitzpatrick qb rating 114.4 on $3 million salary.
    ###

    Rodgers will receive $80 million in the first 12 months of his new contract – and his QB rating is 100.1.

    Meanwhile, the Packers are paying Deshon Kizer $700,000 and his QB rating is 42.9.

    The Packers would have been wise just to leave Rodgers to play at least another year on his old contract and signed a qualified backup QB.

    Instead they gave Rodgers the key to the vault and decided to just hope and pray that they never had to play Kizer.

    That lasted into the first half of the first game…

  36. I love that the Vikings have Kirk. Kirk is playing great. Better play calling will score more touchdowns and less need for field goals. A few field goals here and there and the Vikings would would be 3-2, maybe 4-1. Kirk is playing lights out and if the defense can play better the Vikings will win the division again. We need more sacks and more turnovers, especially interceptions. Funny, it seems like our defense was more on point and aggressive during preseason but has become a little passive now that the season has started. I would like to see George and Hilton get some reps on defense. It seems to me that Mackensie is out of position a lot and gives up a lot of big plays. What do you guys think?

  37. packertruth says:
    October 8, 2018 at 2:27 pm
    Ryan Fitzpatrick qb rating 114.4 on $3 million salary.

    ————————–

    It looks like the Packers should have signed Fitzpatrick to start.

  38. seals1 says:
    October 8, 2018 at 5:31 pm
    Between the talent(lack of) and losing Sporano this line looks awful. All the push is caving in and not going out. This corner Hughes look like he has potential but not taking the guard Will Hernandez looks like a major blunder. Hard to be exited with this line and how easy the D looks to move the ball on so far.

    ————————–

    The Vikings have had a few great drafts the last few years. But yeah, even though Hernandez isn’t the type of G the Vikings were looking for, I think they missed out big time on him. That guy is a mauler. I’m still upset they took Mackenzie Alexander, while G/C Cody Whitehair was still available. They really need to start taking the OLine seriously, really fast. This might end up being a lost season because of the horrible Oline play.

  39. badassblakcamaro says:
    October 8, 2018 at 11:53 am
    Hmmm, .500 record. Seems to me they started a little batter than that last year. Cousins is one of those QBs with nice stats with nothing to show for it. Furthermore, if not for 2 phantom BS roughing the passer calls, the Vikings are

    Umm the Vikings literally started 2-2 last year. Who encourages you people to start talking and spouting off things like this without having any idea if what you’re saying is true. They started 2-2 and went 13-3. I’m not sure why no one realizes that the first 4 to 5 weeks of the season these days has all but replaced the preseason in terms of determining how good a team is because of how little starters play in the preseason and how little contact players are experiencing in practice now. It’s taking 4 to 5 weeks for teams to start showing what they are. This is when the good teams who are healthy tend to start gaining consistency and showing their talent and the teams who aren’t quite as good but won some close games early on start to fall off. Just relax.

  40. Also I’m not sure we can even be critical of cousins to this point. He’s been incredible. Like seriously top 5 qb in the league good so far. Also I think people need to consider that the defense may be experiencing a major change that results from the change in style of offense from a running game that controls the clock to this new high flying high scoring type of offense. It would result in more time on the field, more sudden possession changes, and a lot more passing situations because they are likely to be involved in a lot more shootouts like the rams game. I think this is affecting them a lot more than any one realizes and that they will start to level off once they begin to adjust to it. Also Everson griffen missing is a bigger deal that anyone realizes. We generally have 2 DEs killing it from both sides requiring less blitzing to achieve the same pressure. It’s gonna take time to adjust to that change. Fact is, in 2018, everyone needs to start understanding that they can’t continue to decide they can give a full evaluation of a team this early in the season and determine who is good and who isn’t. You’re just wrong and don’t have nearly enough info to make that determination.

  41. “but he was one of the worst in the redzone when he was with the Redskins.Hopefully for the Vikings sake, he improves on the flaws he had in Washington.”

    Washington still has problems in the red zone. It is a Gruden flaw not Cousins. I have not seen that this year from him.

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