Kirk Cousins is a bit of an enigma; he is one of the great recent success stories for late-round quarterbacks carving out a niche in the NFL as franchise-caliber signal-caller, throwing for over 4,000 yards and 25 touchdowns in each of his seasons as a full-time starter. However, these impressive volume statistics never led to wins with the Washington Redskins, where he was only one game above 0.500 from 2015 to 2017 and started just one playoff game.
All of that was supposed to change in Minnesota, where he took over a team coming off of a 13-3 record and an NFC Championship Game appearance, with the league’s best duo of wide receivers, a great coach and one of the league’s best defenses. Despite all this, the results did not change in the initial stanza with Minnesota, as the Vikings sputtered to 8-7-1 and failed to make the playoffs in what ended up being a weaker-than-anticipated NFC.
While defensive regression, poor play-calling from the now-departed offensive coordinator, poor play up front and the lack of a third option in the passing game are all valid places to look if you want to see an improvement from the Vikings in 2019, Cousins is where it begins and ends for them on the offensive side of the ball. Here, we examine his 2018 season using PFF grades and advanced metrics.