3. Pressure Kirk Cousins
Oh boy. This one is a worry. The Vikings have been struggling to get sacks recently despite being mostly healthy on the defensive line. With Sharrif Floyd still sidelined and Linval Joseph sitting out practices, it gets even scarier.
Not only that, but Washington does a great job of protecting Kirk Cousins. Through 9 weeks, they are tied for the fewest sacks allowed in the NFL (11) and have an offense designed to get the ball out quick and pick up yards after the catch.
This is why the Vikings shouldn’t expect to get their hands of Cousins often during this game, but they can at least pressure him into making some poor decisions. Getting their hands up on the defensive line and getting deep penetration on rushes can make that happen, but that can also play into the Redskins game plan and take them away from a quick dump off or screen.
Thankfully, most of the Vikings pass rushers are aware, quick, and athletic enough not to get stuck in traffic and get removed from a play, but they will need to be extra sure of that this week.