Minnesota’s play-calling made life easier for Kansas City
Entering Sunday, the Chiefs’ defense was one of the worst in the NFL this season at stopping the run. For some reason, however, the Vikings and their excellent rushing attack didn’t really get the chance to exploit this weakness of Kansas City’s.
Of Minnesota’s first 21 offensive plays on Sunday, only eight were running play-calls. Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski apparently felt that utilizing the league’s leading rusher in Dalvin Cook against a terrible Chiefs run defense wasn’t a good strategy.
Now, Minnesota did experience impressive results during their four-game win streak when they placed a bigger emphasis on passing the ball. But this week in Kansas City seemed as good a time as any for the Vikings to turn Cook into a workhorse.
In addition to not calling many running plays, Minnesota’s play-calls often took Cook out of the backfield on a number of different occasions. By doing this, the Chiefs already knew they didn’t have to worry a run play and they could put all of their focus into getting pressure on Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins.
Minnesota’s play-calling on Sunday made it seem like Stefanski was trying too hard to throw Kansas City off with things they haven’t typically done over the previous four weeks. When what he should have been doing the whole time was just continuing to call the plays that worked well for the Vikings’ offense during their winning streak.