The Vikings certainly didn’t need any extra motivation to beat the Eagles this week given how often Philadelphia has embarrassed Minnesota in the past. But Zach Brown has provided some bulletin board material anyway.
Look at what the Eagles linebacker had to say about his former Washington teammate and current Vikings starting quarterback Kirk Cousins, per ESPN’s Tim McManus:
“Cousins, I think every defense is going to want that guy to throw the ball. For me, that’s probably the weakest part of their offense is him. Everything else is good. They’ve got a good running game, probably one of the best in the league. They’ve got real good receivers. You just want them to pass the ball. You want Kirk Cousins to get it in his hands.”
Well, not loving this!
There’s really no need for Brown to be giving Cousins motivation to prove him wrong this weekend. The Eagles should much rather prefer the Vikings running the ball to Cousins dropping back and throwing all day long. Philadelphia’s run defense has been so much better than their pass defense.
This quote from Brown reminds me of when Kamu Grugier-Hill talked about how the Cowboys “always choke” last season. Of course, the Eagles went on to lose their Week 14 game against Dallas.
It’s not that Brown is totally off base with his comments (though I’d say the Vikings’ offensive line is THE weakest part of Minnesota’s offense). Cousins has definitely had some struggles this season, as Pro Football Focus recently highlighted:
“Another player where terrible fumbles are getting hidden behind the passing stats, Cousins is off to a poor start despite what his No. 10 ranking in passer rating may indicate. He has six turnover-worthy plays and only two interceptions to show for them, but for Cousins, it’s been more about the poor quality in each of these plays. Against the Packers in Week 2, Cousins put the ball on the ground twice, while also heaving a prayer into the end zone for an interception with the game on the line. In addition to the turnover-worthy plays, Cousins has been aided by 55.2% of his yards coming after the catch, second-highest in the NFL among quarterbacks with at least 100 attempts. Turnover luck combined with above-average production (due to his playmakers and scheme) has led to a 100.1 passer rating that is not even close to telling the story of Cousins’ season through five weeks.”
These struggles have caused Cousins’ own teammates to openly express displeasure (see: Adam Thielen, Stefon Diggs) with him as their starting quarterback.
Still, these comments from Brown will pretty foolish if the Eagles fail to stop Cousins on Sunday. And it’s not exactly like the Eagles have been great at doing that in the past considering Cousins has accounted for 18 touchdowns and just five interceptions against Philadelphia in his career.
If you’re going to talk trash, you better go back it up.