Thursday, September 21, 2023

Minnesota Vikings Week 3 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 3 roundup for the Minnesota Vikings in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 25

Player: QB Kirk Cousins
Current contract situation: Under contract through the 2023 season

Cousins will turn 36 next summer, but barring significant signs of a physical decline, he stands to be a top free agent target next spring if the Vikings don't re-sign him first. And to this point, there are no indications that he is approaching a drop-off. Through two games, Cousins is second in the NFL in passing yards (708), is tied for first with six touchdown passes and ranks No. 6 in QBR (71.6). He has committed four turnovers, including three lost fumbles, but from an overall business perspective, he has started the season well. -- Kevin Seifert -- Rank: 22

In two games, the Vikings have handed off 26 times, netting a total of 69 yards, with a long run of 9 yards. According to Next Gen Stats, only 30.8 percent of those runs were deemed successful. They've only attempted four runs in 30 fourth-quarter plays. One, a 3-yard loss on first-and-goal from the 1. Another, a Kirk Cousins scramble. The other two were 6- and 7-yard gains from Alexander Mattison. Maybe Mattison's early fumble against the Eagles killed off any designs on running the ball. Or perhaps the Eagles' front did that by itself. But two weeks into the season, this Vikings team is flawed offensively: too dependent on throwing to Justin Jefferson, and not good enough on the ground.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 26

At 0-2, they will be playing a survival game of sorts this week against the Chargers, who are also 0-2. The defense has run-game issues.

USA Today -- Rank: 24

QB Kirk Cousins' prime-time record may now be 11-19, but don't blame Thursday's loss on him. The Vikes were 11-0 in one-score games during the regular season last year ... but are already 0-2 in 2023. Cousins to the Jets — he's a free agent in 2024 — really makes sense if Minnesota remains on this track, which already includes a -6 turnover differential.

The Athletic -- Rank: 24

The offense is not the problem. Minnesota is averaging 6.3 yards per play, which ranks second in the league. The universe is the problem. It allows one-score game luck to go on only so long. The Vikings were 11-0 in one-score games last season. This year: 0-2. Vikings fans were very angry with the Power Rankings last week for a joke about moving wide receiver Justin Jefferson. How about a serious suggestion to make a call to New York and see how much the Jets will pay for quarterback Kirk Cousins?

FOX -- Rank:

If the Vikings were even mediocre at taking care of the ball, they might be 2-0. Instead, they've turned it over seven times in two weeks and the record reflects it. There's a lot to like about the offense, and the NFC North is wide open. No need to panic. Just hold onto the football.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 23

Last season the Vikings were an astonishing 11-0 in one-score games, which was an NFL record. This season they're 0-2. Regression is a real thing.

PFT -- Rank: 25

Last year, the coin always landed heads. This year, tails hasn't failed.

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