Hey, everyone. My apologies for the Power Rankings Roundup taking a week off last week. Between work stuff, school stuff, and a number of other things, something had to get squeezed out, and unfortunately that was it. We’re back with it this week, however.
So, as not to delay things any further, let’s take a look at where the pundits around the National Football League have the Minnesota Vikings slotted for Week 6, shall we?
Associated Press: #13 (Last week: #14)
No Vikings-centric commentary from the AP this week.
Bleacher Report: #16 (Last week: #17)
On Sunday, that was all put to rest. Cousins had easily his best game of the season in New York, lighting up the Giants for 306 yards and two scores—both to Thielen.
Per Chris Tomasson of the Twin Cities Pioneer-Press, Cousins downplayed all the distraction after the game.
”You want everybody there and you also understand that this is a business and people have decisions they need to make, and this is not my first rodeo,” Cousins said. “I think some of these questions are being asked like I’m a rookie and have never experienced this before. This is year eight for me. ... I’m not surprised by what this league can throw at you.”
However, before we declare Minnesota’s up-and-down passing attack A-OK, it’s worth noting that the Giants rank 28th in the NFL in pass defense.
This week’s home date with the Philadelphia Eagles (and the trip to Detroit that comes after) should provide a truer test for the team. And with the Packers rolling, Minnesota can’t afford to stumble.
Pete Prisco, CBS Sports: #18 (Last week: #19)
Maybe the passing game should be challenged on a weekly basis. Kirk Cousins had one of his best games against the Giants. Here comes a big one with the Eagles.
ESPN: #14 (Last week: #14)
Surprise fantasy player: Kyle Rudolph, TE
The nine-year veteran tight end didn’t think his main responsibility would be blocking when he signed a lucrative contract extension in June, but that has been Rudolph’s primary role, as his targets have shrunk significantly in 2019. He has had exactly one pass thrown his way in each of the past three games, and he doesn’t possess value as a red zone threat to fantasy owners as he once did. We expected Rudolph’s role in the passing game to decrease with a shift to a more run-oriented attack, but where it is right now is somewhat staggering.
MMQB, Sports Illustrated: #14 (Last week: #13)
Kirk Cousins finally used his disgruntled receiving corps with some measure of success, prompting a miraculous, completely earnest postgame change of heart from Stefon Diggs (wait, he winked).
Dan Hanzus, NFL.com: #16 (Last week: #19)
Kirk Cousins can offer up weird podcast apologies all day, but the only real way to repair his on-field relationship with Adam Thielen is to turn that contrition into action. On Sunday, the Vikings’ maligned quarterback targeted his No. 1 receiver eight times against the Giants, and Thielen responded with seven catches for 130 yards and two touchdowns in a 28-10 win. It was part of an important bounce-back effort for the Minnesota offense, which piled up nearly 500 yards a week after a Week 4 meltdown against the Bears. Cousins found great success in play action, an element of the offense that had been all but invisible during Minnesota’s early-season funk. Dalvin Cook -- who absolutely deserves way-too-early MVP consideration -- accounted for 218 yards (132 rushing, 86 receiving) in his latest fantasy masterpiece. The Vikes’ defense also showed up, holding New York to 211 yards of total offense.
Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk: #14 (Last week: #21)
14 (tie). Bears (3-2; No. 8): Beat the Vikings, lose to the Raiders.
14 (tie). Raiders (3-2; No. 22): Lose to the Vikings, beat the Bears.
14 (tie). Vikings (3-2; No. 21): Beat the Raiders, lose to the Bears.
Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News: #10 (Last week: #12)
The Vikings are happy on offense again after taking it to the Giants with Kirk Cousins dishing to Adam Thielen and handing off often to Dalvin Cook. As for Stefon Diggs, he should get his turn soon . The passing game has opened up again, and a key matchup against the Eagles and their depleted secondary is next.
USA Today: #9 (Last week: #12)
A get-right game was nice, but no team throwing less often. How does that jibe with diva tendencies creeping into Mike Zimmer’s locker room?
Frank Schwab, Yahoo! Sports: #12 (Last week: #13)
We shouldn’t be negative after a win. However, “Kirk Cousins plays well against bad team and Vikings win” isn’t exactly a shocking headline. The Vikings didn’t give him $84 million to tear up the Giants secondary. But, at least this week should be smoother in Minnesota.
That moves the Vikings a little bit up in their average ranking, but they’re still in “fringe playoff team” status at this point. After the Week 5 loss to the Bears, their average ranking was at 15.4, but this week it’s improved to 13.6. Not great, but a bit better than it was.
Also, for the first time this year, let’s get our graphic of the Power Ranking trends up here so we can all ride the roller coaster together, shall we? You may click to embiggen if you feel it necessary.
It would be nice to not have another valley next week, wouldn’t it? Let’s see how that goes.