5 biggest concerns for the Vikings following the 2019 preseason

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /
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(Photo by Anthony Souffle/Star Tribune via Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Anthony Souffle/Star Tribune via Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /

Bad Kirk Cousins

The Vikings’ offense was humming during the first week of this year’s preseason against the New Orleans Saints. There was a nice mix of run and pass plays and then they hit the bomb to Adam Thielen which set up an Alexander Mattison touchdown.

During Minnesota’s second preseason game, the first-team offense was also pretty good as they were able to move the ball against the Seahawks, but they couldn’t light up the scoreboard.

The Viking’ third exhibition matchup of the year against the Arizona Cardinals was a nationally televised game and it happened. Bad Kirk Cousins reared his ugly head and Minnesota’s offense, alone from a long Dalvin Cook run, couldn’t do anything.

The Vikings can’t have this happen again in 2019. Cousins has to stop collapsing and forgetting how to play football when he’s playing on a national stage.

For whatever the reason, he can’t hit an open receiver and he can’t sense any blitz or pressure when the game is being shown to a large audience. It’s a very strange and troubling phenomenon.

Minnesota probably would never publically state that this is a problem. But behind closed doors, they have to be aware of this situation and they might try to call games a little bit differently when the lights are on Cousins.

Maybe Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski needs to give Cousins some easy throws to make when he’s playing under the lights this season and let him build up some confidence. Minnesota is expected to have an improved ground game this year though and this should also help make this issue go away in 2019.

The Vikings’ offense needs to be a consistent threat week in and week out if they are going to topple the Chicago Bears as the Kings of the North this season.

If Bad Kirk Cousins shows up multiple times this year, Minnesota is probably going to finish with another record that they or their fans won’t be happy with.