The Vikings lapped the Raiders at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday by sticking to a recipe from which, probably, they’d lean toward not to go astray.
They kept running for 211 yards against a hapless Oakland protection, cruising to a three-touchdown lead for the second straight home game and again adequately consigning Kirk Cousins to a supporting job after his appalling day at Lambeau Field in Week 2.
Be that as it may, a Week 3 triumph at home, 52 weeks after 2018’s out-of-body involvement against Buffalo, didn’t have to accompany numerous qualifiers.
“[It] feels a lot like Week 1: we got out ahead early and the defense played so well early — kept getting us the ball back,” Cousins said. “The way we ran the ball made a big difference and really told the story of the game.”
In the Vikings’ 34-14 win, Dalvin Cook turned into the first player in Quite a while history to keep running for 100 yards in every one of his initial three games, amazing with his deft feet on a 16-carry, 110-yard day. Alexander Mattison devoured a major opening in the Raiders’ guard for a 10-yard score, curtailing to one side and leaping into the end zone from the four for his first vocation touchdown.
Indeed, even third-stringer Mike Boone burst through for a 24-yard keep running in the final quarter, by a point in the game where Cook’s activity was to bless the sidelines as the U.S. Bank Stadium video boards detailed his statistical achievements.
It enabled the Vikings to pursue a significant part of indistinguishable equation against the Raiders from they utilized against the Falcons in Week 1. On Sunday, Cousins tossed only 21 passes, finishing 15 of them for 174 yards — including a 35-yard score to Adam Thielen he let fly from a spotless pocket. His first final quarter go at U.S. Bank Stadium won’t come until at any rate Oct. 13; Cousins didn’t toss one in the Falcons game, and he didn’t toss one again on Sunday.
“Small sample size still a little bit — only three games,” Cousins said. “I think that will probably even itself out as the year goes on. But if it doesn’t, I would shrug my shoulders and say, ‘Who cares? We don’t need to. Let’s just win, however we have to do that.’”
The Vikings have had the option to run the ball at home while up by three touchdowns; they were likewise ready to do so a week ago in Green Bay when they were moving out of a 21-point gap. In any case, at home, with the U.S. Bank Stadium swarm taking care of business, the Vikings’ barrier could receive the rewards of home-field advantage against a Raiders defense missing two beginning hostile linemen.
They kept security Harrison Smith in profound inclusion all the more frequently on Sunday, constraining Derek Carr to make underneath tosses and endeavor to support drives against their guard. As indicated by NFL Next Gen Stats, only eight of Carr’s 34 pass endeavors voyaged at least 10 yards down the field. His first touchdown — on an insect gleam from the Vikings’ 29 — went ahead a downfield toss, however so did the block attempt he tossed to Smith, who was holding up over the highest point of the Vikings’ protection subsequent to making a pre-snap change in accordance with a two-profound safety look.
With handles Linval Joseph and Shamar Stephen controlling the line of scrimmage, linebacker Eric Kendricks had space to run, on a day where his seven tackles incorporated various run stops close to the line of scrimmage. Furthermore, despite the fact that Raiders tight end Darren Waller (who had 134 yards on 13 gets) turned into the primary contradicting recipient to outperform 100 yards at U.S. Bank Stadium, he did so to a great extent on snappy tosses from Carr after the game was reach. At the point when things were still close, the Raiders quarterback had couple of choices downfield.
“We see maximum protection all the time,” Zimmer said. “People do not want us to blitz them; so be it. We just get a chance to rush on tight ends, we get a chance to cover, we get a chance to do some other things.”
The Vikings’ cautious variance under Zimmer is settled at this point; the 2019 adaptation of their offense is as yet hoping to demonstrate it can reliably accomplish more than run the ball. It could be compelled to do as such next Sunday in Chicago, against a Bears defense that was the NFL’s hardest to keep running against a year ago.
Except if they’re compelled to desert the formula, however, there’s no reason to do as such now. Not when it’s filled in just as it has in two home games.
“They won’t all be like [Sunday],” Zimmer said. “Chicago will be very difficult to run the football on, I’m sure. But we’re going to go in there and give it a shot.”