FanPost

4 Downs to 5-5

1st Down: Rare is the individual player who, in a team sport, can almost single-handedly determine the outcome of a game. Randy Moss could do that. Adrian Peterson had the same ability. Justin Jefferson may be ascending to that sort of rarified air. Every time the Vikings needed a play against Green Bay in Week 11, JJ was there. Every--Single--Time. Much like #84 on that prophetic rainy Lambeau evening in '98, #18 would not be denied. He is the present and the future of this organization.

2nd Down: In the parity-driven NFL, it is impossible to play aggressive AND avoid all potential miscues. So, when Kirk Cousins starts chucking the ball all over the yard, there are going to be opportunities for interceptions, fumbles, and general disaster. But I'll take that every day of the week over the super-conservative alternative (we all know how that goes, ad naseam). For every near-pick, there's going to be a PI flag for the effort. For every sack or fumble, there's going to be a game-breaking play like the aggressive back-shoulder throw to Thielen that ultimately set up the game-winning field goal. With as poorly as the defense is playing--and no real relief in sight--this team needs to take chances to get the ball to the biggest playmakers.

3rd Down: Speaking of that defense--woof. 467 total yards allowed, 8.6 yards/play, 148.4 rating for Rodgers--that was atrocious. I'm really hoping that Smith & Peterson are perhaps still shaking off some rust, because Danielle Hunter isn't coming back to save the day. This still remains my biggest concern for the rest of the season: Zimmer not accepting that the D-unit is outright bad (like it was last year, truth be told) and still coaching like it can make late-game stops. Nothing thus far in '21 has proven that to be even remotely true.

4th Down: It was good to see Dalvin Cook finally start to find some seams late in the game against the Packers. For as good as Cousins, Jefferson, & Thielen have been and can be, Cook is still a unique talent who can take this offense from "above-average" to "elite". I don't know if it's wear-and-tear from previous campaigns or simply poor blocking up front, but the Chef hasn't had nearly the impact of years previous. My gut feeling tells me that next week in San Francisco could be a "Dalvin game". Whereas it used to always be Cook opening up room for the WRs to roam, maybe this season is when they return the favor in kind.

This FanPost was created by a registered user of The Daily Norseman, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of the site. However, since this is a community, that view is no less important.