Vikings Fall Flat and 7 Other Thoughts Following Week 11’s Dreadful Defeat
Did the Vikings fall flat in Week 11? I expected a close, competitive game, but we got something that was quite different. Dallas completely controlled the game, finishing off Kevin O’Connell’s squad with a 40-3 score.
How should Vikings fans understand the game? Are there any positive takeaways? A handful of thoughts following the loss.
Vikings Fall Flat in Week 11 Disaster
1) Let’s begin with the reality of the full season. The Vikings have now lost two games. They fell 24-7 to the Eagles in Week 2 and 40-3 in Week 11. The Vikings didn’t make either game particularly close. Both NFC East teams dominated the games. The positive is that Minnesota bounced back from that Week 2 defeat, putting together 7-straight wins. Will they be able to pull off something similar?
2) Would it be fair to say that perhaps we should have expected a really poor effort given that the team is coming off such a great win streak? Was a letdown inevitable?
3) Rough game for Andrew Booth Jr. The rookie corner finished with 9 tackles, a statistic that underscores how he was targeted plenty. Getting in on so many tackles is an indicator that Dallas made an effort to target the receivers being covered by the second-round corner. He’ll learn from this game and be better for it in the end.
4) Would it be too dramatic to say that this is a critical point in Kevin O’Connell’s rookie season as a head coach? So far, the team has enjoyed almost exclusively positive outcomes (with Week 2 being the lone exception). Getting dismantled at home is a tough way to go. Seeing as how Bill Belichick comes to town in just a few days, O’Connell will need to get his side back on track soon. The Patriots have the league’s second-best defense, allowing a mere 16.9 points per game.
5) Hard to be overly critical of Kirk Cousins in this one. He was getting pressured on what felt like a near constant basis. Overall, the QB1 is still having his best season in Minnesota, but I don’t imagine he’s overly pleased with the outcome. He finished the game having gone 12/23 for 105 yards. He had 0 TDs and 0 INTs and a 64.6 quarterback rating. He was sacked 7 times and hit several more.
6) After all the hand-wringing, no one is talking about the kicking. Glass half-full, folks.
7) Some of the unflattering numbers. 40-3 victory for Dallas. They went for 458 yards whereas Minnesota could only scrounge up 183. Dallas possessed the ball for more then 37 minutes. They went 12/17 on third downs while Minnesota went 1/11. They had 7 sacks and Minnesota had 0. We could go on, but you get the point. Tough day at the office for the Vikings.
8) Did the Vikings fall flat? Without question. Perhaps it’s a good thing that their next game occurs on Thursday. Playing on Thanksgiving is something that a lot of players seem to enjoy. Ideally, the quick trip back to the football field will allow the players to get their minds off of the brutal game and onto something more productive: winning the next one. Defeating the Patriots – and doing so while keeping the roster healthy – must now be the priority.