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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Cousins: Vikings will have ‘tremendous sense of urgency’ heading to Philly

By Matthew Coller

Coming away from the first quarter of the NFL season with only one win is not something the Minnesota Vikings expected when they signed Kirk Cousins this offseason.

On Thursday night, the focus of frustration for Vikings fans largely shifted to the defensive side of the ball because of Cousins’ terrific overall performance and the team’s failure to slow down Jared Goff.

Now at 1-2-1, the Vikings head to Philadelphia with the feeling that their season is on the line.

“There will be a tremendous sense of urgency,” Cousins said of next wee’s matchup. “We’ll have an edge to us in our preparation, and edge to us during that game. They’re the defending world champs, playing in their place, they’ve re-loaded and added some talent. It’s going to be a challenge, but that’s what this league is all about.”

As far as first-quarter expectations go, Cousins said he’s in “one-week-at-a-time” mode and that it’s hard to survive any other way in the NFL.

“If I start thinking about the 12 games we have left, I’m going to have to take a nap,” Cousins said. “I’m thinking about the Eagles. Let’s focus on the Eagles. Do what we have to do there.”

Cousins finished with 422 yards, three touchdowns, zero interceptions. He completed 19 passes to his No. 1 and 1A receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen. Diggs finished with 11 receptions to lead the team.

“Stef caught a slant and it was high, a 43 blitz and I put it over him, unbelievable catch and after he caught it and we got back to the huddle, Adam looks at me and says, ‘the other dog came out, you better start getting him the ball,’” Cousins said. “I’ve been around Stef long enough, when he gets that look in his eye, get him the ball. I love to see that competitiveness and to see how Adam and him feed off each other.”

Thielen had another outstanding day with eight receptions for 135 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown on a play Cousins said he wanted the Vikings use more on Thursday night.

“I wish we had gone back to that a few more times,” Cousins said. “Just trying to move the safety, they spot dropped and didn’t carry him and was left all alone. That play is about as old as time…we still run it because it works.”

Cousins’ night was nearly perfect, but he was stripped by John Franklin-Myers to end the game with his team down by a touchdown.

“You tell me, man,” Cousins said when asked about the play. “I take a five-step drop, tried to throw a shallow cross to Adam [Thielen’s] inside shoulder and the ball got hit.”

The Vikings’ quarterback later was asked which plays might stick keep him up at night despite the strong performance and he alluded to the fumble and being out of his control.

“I always go back and look at the plays that I can control, those are the ones I agonize over and sometimes a fumble, sometimes a sack, sometimes incompletions are not something I can control, just something unfortunate, so I think it’s a balance,” Cousins said.

The Vikings struggled to run the ball against the Rams’ terrific defense and gave up four sacks, but also gave Cousins time to throw the ball for the majority of the game.

“There were a lot of six-man protections dropping back, which is not really the world you want to be in against Aaron Donald, but that’s what the gameplan called for and the game called for and we rolled it in,” Cousins said.

Asked if his expectations have changed following the slow start to the season, the Vikings’ quarterback pointed back to the offense’s ability to get its star players to ball as reasons to believe they can still succeed.

“It’s what I thought when I met Adam and Stef[on Diggs] in April and we threw on the field, I said ‘these guys can play,’” Cousins said. “I don’t know that that was going to change regardless of how we did in the first four games. Certainly we can move the football. We just have to turn it into wins.”

The post Cousins: Vikings will have ‘tremendous sense of urgency’ heading to Philly appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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