Is Kirk Cousins the Only Highly Paid QB Who’s Bad vs Winning Teams???

Photo: Harrison Barden – USA TODAY Sports

When Kirk Cousins first arrived in Minnesota, one of the statistics being used against him was his record against winning teams, which now stands at 4-25. This topic has been discussed time and time again, when talking about our semi-new quarterback. But here’s the thing about this statistic… 

… he’s not the only highly paid QB who struggles vs. winning teams…

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For some QB’s, it seems these “big” wins are just a meaningless stat in a team game. Yet for guys like Kirk, these victories are what defines their NFL career. The 2018 season saw the Michigan State alum struggle again against teams with winning records, both at home and on the road. The Vikings finishing (1-6) in those games.

Although plenty of blame deserves to fall on Cousins’ shoulders, the non-existent running game coupled with the Pop Warner Offensive Line the Vikings ran out in 2018, definitely helped drive the struggle bus vs these good teams. So, I decided to take a look around the league at 6 other QB’s, to see how others have done vs winning teams throughout their respective careers. All of the quarterbacks listed are considered above average. Some have played on good teams and others with bad ones. Most are in the middle, somewhere.

  • Matthew Stafford – (7-58)
  • Aaron Rodgers – (25-36-1)
  • Tom Brady – (59-36)
  • Drew Brees – (28-53)
  • Russell Wilson – (25-19)

(Per Pro-Football-Reference.com)

Basically, if your name isn’t Tom Brady or Russell Wilson, you are under .500 against teams who are over that benchmark. It’s almost as if winning teams are winning teams because they… wait for it… win games. There are plenty of times that QB’s are at fault, sure but offensive lines don’t hold up sometimes, and same can be said for defenses. Hell, OC’s and DC’s call bad plays or mismanage games while head coaches can cause all sorts of issues. In other words, It’s a team game.

Does Cousins need to be better when it matters most? Absolutely. No one is saying any differently, but the very good teams in the league are very good for a reason. Winning teams have winning records for a reason.

Nonetheless, Year 2 is it for Cousins. Are we going to see a step forward, away from the trend of seasons resulting in .500 records, with 4,000 yard and 30 TD’s, without anything to show for it? Are we going to continue harping on the necessity of a picture-perfect situation around Kirk Cousins offensively, in order for him to maintain any sort of consistent success…?

Well, at this point he has us all believing that the unfortunate trends will continue. However, running out the NFL’s 29th ranked offensive line unit last season, along with the 30th ranked rushing attack, didn’t help the cause. With Gary Kubiak arriving, Rick Dennison taking over as the OL Coach and Run Game coordinator and Kevin Stefanski being brought on as the OC… Its time for Kirk Cousins to take that step, to leave that 4-25 record vs winning teams in the past and begin adding wins to it. It’s time for the law of averages to kick in.

The excuse train has reached its final stop for Cousins and the Vikings offense.

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Brian Heintz | Minnesota Sports Fan