Remember Matthew Stafford’s Stinker in Week 1? Kirk Cousins Recreated It Last Night

Matthew Stafford Puts Kirk Cousins in Perspective. Again.
Dec 23, 2018; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) and Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports.

In the endless cycle of comparisons between Matthew Stafford and Kirk Cousins, it turns out that even when they play at their worst, they put together similar numbers.

Matthew Stafford opened his season at home against the Buffalo Bills, and the reigning Super Bowl champ had a rough go of things. He completed 29-of-41 passes (70.7%) and had 242 total yards, a single TD pass, and 3 INTs. LA ended up losing to the Bills 31-10 in their primetime season opener.

Not to be outdone, Kirk Cousins put up an eerily similar stat line on Monday Night Football against the Philadelphia Eagles. He was much more inaccurate than Stafford in terms of completion percentage, but other than that, it’s virtually identical. Cousins completed 27-of-46 passes (58.7%) and accounted for 241 yards, 1 TD pass, and 3 INTs.

So, why go through this exercise?

Vikings fans went to bed upset, nay furious, at their team for playing a stinker of a game for the whole country to see. That said, unless you’re the 1972 Miami Dolphins, these ups-and-downs are to be expected for quite literally every team throughout the NFL’s 102-year history.

Bad losses are going to happen, and they’ve happened in primetime on multiple occasions early in this NFL season. Here’s every result of a primetime game through two weeks of the 2022 campaign:

  • Buffalo Bills beat LA Rams, 31-10
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat Dallas Cowboys, 19-3
  • Kansas City Chiefs beat LA Chargers, 27-24
  • Green Bay Packers beat Chicago Bears, 27-10
  • Buffalo Bills beat Tennessee Titans, 41-7
  • Philadelphia Eagles beat Minnesota Vikings, 24-7

The Vikings got their helping of humble pie served early in the season, and now the important thing is that they regroup. That starts with beating the Detroit Lions this week.

Stafford did a fabulous job of bouncing back this week against the Falcons. The Rams narrowly escaped a comeback, but Stafford passed for 272 yards and three touchdowns. In true gunslinger Stafford form, he added a couple interceptions, but this week’s version of Matthew Stafford looked much closer to the version that helped lead LA to a Super Bowl.

If you take one thing away from this soliloquy, let it be this. Kirk Cousins had a bad game, and the Vikings had a bad game. Just like Matthew Stafford and the Rams played poorly in Week 1. We can upset about the loss, but it’s far too early to think that this season is off the rails.

The Philadelphia Eagles are one of the best teams in the NFC, and they showed it on Monday. The Vikings are working towards that, but they simply aren’t there yet. That doesn’t mean they won’t be there two months from now. There’s a lot of football to be played. Keep the purple faith.

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