5 Vikings to watch in the Divisional Round vs. the 49ers

(Photo by Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes
(Photo by Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes /
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(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /

Kirk Cousins – QB

Kirk Cousins finally did it. He won an NFL playoff game. Not only did he win a playoff game but he did it on the road in an extremely hostile environment. He proved his naysayers wrong and made clutch throws that led his team to victory.

Statistically, Kirk Cousins didn’t have a huge game, throwing for just 242 yards and one touchdown. He played very smartly though. He didn’t try to do too much and made the throws that the Saints’ defense was giving him. Cousins protected the football well and instead of forcing anything, threw the ball away when there was no one open or the pressure was too great. He was extremely efficient and let Dalvin Cook and the running attack do most of the heavy lifting.

Cousins is going to have a huge test in front of him this week. The 49ers’ defense is great on all three levels. Their defensive line is explosive and deep. Their linebackers can cover, blitz, and are sure tacklers and their secondary is solid and being led and inspired by a resurgent Richard Sherman.

Cousins is going to have to play a similar game to what he did against the Saints. He’ll need to be smart with the football and also get the ball out in a hurry. If he is careless for even one play, this defense will make him pay, and it could be the difference in the game.

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Let’s hope Kevin Stefanski helps him out with the playcalling. Hopefully, the straight dropbacks are limited, and we see a lot of play-action and rollouts called. Fans will want to see if Kirk Cousins can do it again this week, and permanently shut the mouths of those who still doubt him.