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It’s Two Weeks and the Vikings Offense Already Looks Like It’s On Life Support

It may only be two weeks into the 2020 NFL season, but it is safe to say that panic has already set in for fans of the Vikings, as the team is off to an 0-2 start, this after the team was in the NFC Divisional playoffs just eight months ago.

Week one saw the team fall at home to the team many picked to win the NFC North, the Green Bay Packers, and then yesterday in Indianapolis the team was a slight underdog, but still didn’t play up to potential in an ugly 28-11 setback to the Colts.

The team will be back at home this week to take on a team that surprised everyone in 2019, the Tennessee Titans, a team that made it to the AFC Title game before losing to the Chiefs.

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The biggest problem in two games for the Vikings has been the inconsistent quarterback play of Kirk Cousins, who had ups and downs in 2019, but this year thus far has been flat out bad.

Sunday in Indianapolis he was just 11-for-26 for 113 yards with three interceptions, and his quarterback rating was a putrid 15.9.

Pressure is going to fall on Vikings offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak to help Cousins and the rest of the offense to get turned around.

Monday he admitted that he has to be the one on the coaching staff to work hard to get things going in the right direction.

“I wake up this morning looking at myself. I’ve got to figure it out,” he said, via Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press.

Cousins’ play is a major concern, but there’s no way that right now the Vikings are set to go to another quarterback, and Kubiak knows that it’s about the veteran just getting comfortable and getting on track with the rest of the offense.

“I’ve got to find a way to get him off to a better start… There’s not a lot of snaps. We’ve got to figure it out,” Kubiak told KFAN, via Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press.

Getting the run game going can only help as well, as thus far in two games the team has not seen the best of Dalvin Cook, who is the team’s feature back.

That also means there’s pressure on the club’s offensive line to block better, and flat out open holes for Cook, a dynamic back who can get things going if given the chance.

Sunday is another chance to be at the crossroads at home for the Vikings, it’ll be interesting to see if this week is better and if things can indeed go better for the Vikings.

Wednesday’s Injury Report for the Vikings Week One Battle with the Packers

GREEN BAY PACKERS
 
Practice Report
  DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE
  Wednesday LB Randy Ramsey (groin), G Billy Turner (knee)
 
  LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
  Wednesday DE Montravius Adams (toe), LB Oren Burks (groin), S Raven Greene (quadricep)
 
MINNESOTA VIKINGS
 
Practice Report
  Wednesday (no injuries to report)

Vikings 2020 Schedule Released, Team to Start at Home Against Packers

Thursday night the Vikings 2020 schedule was released, and the team will take on the Packers at home in a week one showdown.

Here’s a look at the complete slate for 2020:

Week 1 (9/13): vs. Green Bay Packers (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 2 (9/20): at Indianapolis Colts (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 3 (9/27): vs. Tennessee Titans (12:00 p.m. on CBS)
Week 4 (10/4): at Houston Texans (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 5 (10/11): at Seattle Seahawks (7:20 p.m. on NBC)
Week 6 (10/18): vs. Atlanta Falcons (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 7 (10/25): BYE WEEK
Week 8 (11/1): at Green Bay Packers (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 9 (11/8): vs. Detroit Lions (12:00 p.m. on CBS)
Week 10 (11/16): at Chicago Bears (Monday, 7:15 p.m. on ESPN)
Week 11 (11/22): vs. Dallas Cowboys (3:25 p.m. on FOX)
Week 12 (11/29): vs. Carolina Panthers (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 13 (12/6): vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (12:00 p.m. on CBS)
Week 14 (12/13): at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 15 (12/20): vs. Chicago Bears (12:00 p.m. on FOX)
Week 16 (12/25): at New Orleans Saints (Friday, 3:30 p.m on FOX/NFL Network)
Week 17 (1/3): at Detroit Lions (12:00 p.m. on FOX)

Redskins OT Trent Williams Denies He Didn’t Want to Play with the Vikings

Redskins offensive tackle Trent Williams is denying that he struck down a potential trade to the Vikings because he didn’t want to play in Minnesota, he told ESPN on Saturday.

“No, that’s not true,” Williams said.

However, sources confirmed to ESPN that the potential trade partners were informed at some point Friday that Williams did not want to play for the Vikings, as was first reported by NFL Network.

A source told ESPN that the Vikings had been among the preferred destinations for Williams and that the teams had discussed a deal for more than a month. But they did not come close to anything until Friday morning, when Minnesota increased its offer to include a second Day 3 draft pick, sources said. The Vikings had previously offered one pick on the third day.

Minnesota ended up selecting an offensive tackle, Ezra Cleveland, in the second round of the draft.

With six teams drafting tackles in the first round Thursday, it’s uncertain what teams will want to trade for Williams. The San Francisco 49ers had expressed interest, but there was no deal imminent, and sources said plenty of work remains. The 49ers likely will wait to know whether starting left tackle Joe Staley is retiring before making a move. The 49ers would also have to create more salary-cap space. If the 49ers want to acquire Williams, they would likely have to offer picks in the 2021 draft because they only have picks in the last three rounds Saturday.

Other teams, such as the Los Angeles Rams, might have interest, but lack the cap space to pull off a deal. Both the Rams (Sean McVay) and 49ers (Kyle Shanahan) have head coaches who worked with Williams in Washington.

The Redskins have maintained they don’t feel they need to trade Williams this weekend if they don’t like the offers.

Are the Vikings Chatting with the Browns About a Potential Odell Beckham Deal?

The Minnesota Vikings could use some help at the wide out spot after the team moved Stefon Diggs to the Buffalo Bills earlier this offseason.

With the draft just over a week away, rumors will be hot and heavy, and one this morning involved the Vikings and reports of a chat with the Cleveland Browns over receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who would fit the Vikings like a glove.

The rumor about Odell to the Vikings comes from midday New York radio host Marc Malusis. He is a co-host of the show “Moose and Maggie” 10a to 2p on WFAN 660.

Here’s the tweet that he posted on Wednesday:

How truthful the rumor is no one really knows (except maybe the Browns and Vikings), and it has seemed like a lot of Beckham/trade rumors have come out of New York, where Odell once played.

Stay tuned as the Vikings could very much use a receiver, and it would be interesting if Minnesota would give up that much of a bounty for Beckham’s services.

Kirk Cousins Says It Might Be “a Breath of Fresh Air” to Play in an Empty Stadium

Amid uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins remains hopeful that he’ll be playing football games this fall.

While the NFL has pressed forward with plans to start the season as scheduled, Cousins noted Tuesday that he believes there are “creative and unique ways” to make certain that games take place, Courtney Cronin of ESPN reports.

Does that mean playing in empty stadiums without fans? Although the Vikings QB said he hasn’t given thought to that scenario, the possibility of games having an altered look and feel might not be the most foreign outcome for NFL players.

“Honestly, we practice every day in an empty grass area and pump in fake crowd noise for away games,” Cousins said on a conference call. “But more often than not, you’re used to it. OTA practices don’t have a lot of pomp and circumstance to them.

“So honestly, to go out and just play the game would kind of be refreshing, a breath of fresh air, to just let us know that we don’t have to have all the smoke and the fire. We can just play football. So as long as we’re playing the game, I won’t have a lot of complaints, and hopefully if it’s still not returned to normal, we can find a way to make it work.”

Vikings Pull Off Deal with Buffalo Bills for WR Stefon Diggs

The Bills have added a huge piece to their offense, as Thursday the team made a deal with the Minnesota Vikings for wide receiver Stefon Diggs.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Bills traded a first-round pick, fifth-round pick, sixth-round pick and 2021 fourth-round pick for Diggs and a seventh-round pick in this year’s draft.

Diggs made it official on Monday afternoon, stating “it’s time for a new beginning.”

The move to land Diggs gives the Bills a top-notch wide receiver who can make plays downfield for quarterback Josh Allen.

The 2015 fifth-round pick signed a five-year, $72 million extension with the Vikings in July 2018.

Minnesota will likely use at least one if not two of the picks they acquired for Diggs to draft at least one pass catcher.

Vikings Chatting with Agent for Free Agent DE Everson Griffen

Everson Griffen is set to become a free agent but one that the Vikings really would like to have back with the team if at all possible.

Griffen has been a solid player for the franchise, but at 32 years old, the team needs to be careful on what they are going to pay him if they make him an offer.

Last season Griffen recorded eight sacks and he was able to make a number of big plays for the the Vikings throughout the season.

So it doesn’t come as a shock that the Vikings do want Griffen back, and that chats are ongoing with his agent according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

As always, it will come down to money and what Griffen is going to want, along with how many years he thinks he’s worth and if the Vikings agree.

Video: “Best of” the 2019 Season on Under with Kirk Cousins

Watch a compilation of the best moments from Under Center with Kirk Cousins from the Vikings 2019 season.

Gary Kubiak Excited to Be Back Calling Plays for the Vikings

After a smooth first year as an offensive adviser for the Vikings, Gary Kubiak was presented with the opportunity to rediscover his play-calling acumen, the Associated Press reports.

When offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski climbed the ladder for the top job in Cleveland, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer sought to maintain as much continuity as possible after a solid season by quarterback Kirk Cousins and the rest of the offense. Kubiak had no interest in being a head coach again, but offensive coordinator? Well, that sure was intriguing.

“I just said, ‘Coach, mind if I go back home and mow some grass for a couple days or something and think about it?’” Kubiak recalled.

He only needed a day and a half. He was more than ready to accept the position.

“I never lost the joy,” Kubiak said.

The offensive adviser job, which included the title of assistant head coach, was created a year ago for Kubiak after the interest in working with Zimmer turned out to be mutual. Working with Stefanski on the playbook and game-planning was just the spark he was hoping for, after spending the previous two seasons away from the sideline as a personnel adviser for Denver.

Kubiak’s eight-year run as head coach of the Houston Texans and two-season stint as head coach of the Broncos were both shortened by health trouble. This will be his 13th year as an offensive coordinator in the NFL.

“He’s got a great way about him. He’s very down to earth. He’s got a lot of skins on the wall, so the players really respect him,” Zimmer said.