The arrival of Kirk Cousins has provided the Minnesota Vikin

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The arrival of Kirk Cousins has provided the Minnesota Vikin

Postby linchao » Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:53 pm

Still, at the 10-game mark of his debut season, Cousins and the Vikings offense remain a work in progress. Their two lowest yardage totals of the year have come in each of the past two games, they've gained fewer rushing yards than every team in the Youth Akiem Hicks Jersey NFL but one, and their 16 turnovers are the fourth most in the league. After falling at first-place Chicago on Sunday night, they're 1 games behind the Bears in the NFC North ."I'd like to think I'll be a better quarterback come this Sunday and the rest of the season," Cousins said, looking ahead to the game against the Green Bay Packers.In the six games left for Minnesota (5-4-1), only one opposing defense, the Bears, is currently in the top 10 in the NFL in fewest yards allowed.Now's the time for the Vikings to consistently produce enough points to complement the vaunted defense that's back in form after some earlier trouble.With a new quarterback in Cousins and a new coordinator in John DeFilippo, there were bound to be some bumps on the road to offensive rhythm. This midseason regression, triggered largely by fumbles and interceptions, has arisen past the point of chalking it up to transitional challenges."For the most part , what we're really talking about is not beating ourselves," running back Latavius Murray said, "especially in very, very critical situations."The timing of these struggles has appeared especially concerning in the context of the rest of the league, in a week when the Los Angeles Rams beat the Kansas City Chiefs 54-51 and the New Orleans Saints scored at least 45 points for the third straight game .Those are the teams with the three best records in the league, raising the question about whether this team can truly be considered a Super Bowl contender, let alone return to the NFC championship game.Coach Mike Zimmer, without prompting, wondered aloud this week whether DeFilippo and the Vikings were calling too complicated of a game plan."I don't know if learning to play together is quite the thing. We do have a lot of guys going in different spots. It might be ... a little too much volume," Zimmer said."Let's just play football, you know? You run a really good out route, you run the out route. He runs a good curl, he runs the curl. You know what I mean? So maybe we just need to focus a little bit on not trying to trick the other team quite so much."Zimmer added: "It might be the best play in the world 鈥?Vince Lombardi might have designed it 鈥?but if you can't execute it, it doesn't do you any good."Certainly Danny Trevathan Jersey , the offensive line is a major part of this equation, with not only more pressure allowed on Cousins than desired, but a concerning amount of running plays stopped at the line of scrimmage or in the backfield.Murray and Cook, who lost a fumble at the Bears 14-yard line on the second possession in one of the most crucial mistakes of that game, had no room to run in the first three quarters before the Vikings entered must-pass mode in an attempt to catch up.The hamstring injury that kept Cook out of five games earlier this season was a significant blow to the offense, but even when he's been in action the Vikings have also been unable to get screen passes going the way they often did last year.As dominant as Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs have been down the field, there's simply an element or two that's been lacking from this group overall in most of the games this season.Of course, the story of a team's success can start and end with turnovers, which have proven to be a consistent problem for Cousins.Though miscommunications with receivers, whiffs by offensive linemen and shaky handoffs with running backs have factored in, Cousins has been charged with 13 of the 16 turnovers.The play that essentially sealed the victory for the Bears was an interception return for a touchdown by Eddie Jackson in the fourth quarter ."Other than the turnovers, I have a hard time faulting him," Zimmer said. "This kid is tough. He plays outstanding. He works his rear end off. He's a great team guy." With three offensive linemen hurt, Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill was feeling the heat Monday.From his critics Authentic Cody Whitehair Jersey , that is.Tannehill took a pounding in the Dolphins' latest defeat Sunday at Cincinnati, and then caught plenty of blame for his team's second ugly loss in a row. Coach Adam Gase, ever loyal to Tannehill, mounted a modest defense by noting problems with pass protection."I don't think he was horrible," Gase said. "When a (teammate) gets beat so fast he can't defend himself unless he's Houdini, not many guys are getting away."The Dolphins are 3-2 and tied with New England for the AFC East lead, but it hardly feels that way. In the past two weeks they've lost at the Patriots 38-7 and blown a 17-point lead at Cincinnati , leaving Gase forced to address the question of whether Tannehill remains his starting quarterback (the answer was yes).Tannehill took responsibility for the Dolphins' collapse Sunday, when they were outscored 27-0 by the Bengals in the final 21 minutes left and lost 27-17. His ill-advised pass under pressure was intercepted and returned for a touchdown, and a strip sack produced Cincinnati's final score."It all started with the turnovers," Tannehill said. "That's on me."In Tannehill's defense, he was hit 11 times in the second half. Protection by Miami's injury-riddled line disappeared after left tackle Laremy Tunsil was sidelined with a concussion.This season's offensive line was expected to be the best Tannehill has played behind, but instead the perennial problem of poor pass protection persists. The Dolphins lost left guard Josh Sitton and center Daniel Kilgore to earlier season-ending injuries."Anytime starters go down, it's hard Youth Eric Kush Jersey ," Tannehill said.When Miami was 3-0, Tannehill had a quarterback rating of 121.8. But in the past two games it's 54.0, with one touchdown pass, four turnovers and five sacks. He has struggled mostly on third down and late in the game, a career-long pattern.No letup in pass pressure is likely this week, when the Dolphins face the Chicago Bears (3-1) and Pro Bowl end Khalil Mack, who has at least one sack and at least one forced fumble in every game.How will the Dolphins slow Mack down?"You're not going to slow him down," Gase said.Sam Young flopped as Tunsil's replacement in Cincinnati. Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said the Dolphins missed Tunsil, especially because they left Young in one-on-one situations."It makes a difference when you lose a tackle at this level of football," Lewis said. "And they didn't seem to want to help the guy when they left the guy out there. Our guys did a nice job. We had blood in the water, and we went after it."Gase said he'll re-evaluate the line this week and make "a couple of decisions" regarding who plays where."We'll figure it out," Gase said. "That's what we do. They're not going to stop the season. We're going to play next week no matter how many guys we've got."
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