If the Vikings have to resort to ‘Plan B,’ they could do worse than Mattison. During his rookie season, Mattison was able to carve out a solid role for the Vikings with 462 yards and a touchdown but was also used most of the time when Minnesota had a lead.
Mattison’s usage creates a couple of questions when it comes to his effectiveness. The Boise State product ranked third in the NFL in breakaway percentage (or percentage of carries 20 yards or more) per Pro Football Focus, but it could have been a product of Cook wearing down the defense for Mattison could thrive.
There’s also the counter-argument that Mattison was facing eight-man boxes as teams tried to stop the run late, but that also leads to bigger runs as there isn’t a second wave of defense.
Perhaps the answer to what Mattison could do as the starter lies somewhere between. He’s probably not the elite breakaway threat PFF charted him as, but he’s not going to completely flop and gain under three yards per carry either.
Either way, the Vikings do have faith in him after selecting him in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft. If Mattison gets the call, there’s a good chance he’ll be ready to fill Cook’s shoes.