Mike Zimmer, Vikings Offense Continues to Prove Stefon Diggs Right
“This is a big game for us. It’s Sunday night. The world will be watching, and we want to show the world that the Vikings are not the ones to be counted out.” That is what Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson had to say before Sunday Night Football vs the Dallas Cowboys.
JJ wanted to showcase what he and the Vikings offense was capable of while the national lights shined down on northern flyover country. Unfortunately, the show didn’t go according to plan and Jefferson’s words would look quite foolish in hindsight because Mike Zimmer and the offensive game plan was never going to allow that to happen.
Justin’s running mate Adam Thielen, and Thielen’s agent, Blake Baratz, had plenty of their own words to share about the purple offense both during and after the game.
Adam Thielen: "We gotta quit just hanging in games. Every game we just hang around, hang around, let the team hang around, instead of putting our foot on the gas and going."— Will Ragatz (@WillRagatz) November 1, 2021
Stefon Diggs still right
Here is what Stefon Diggs said recently when revisiting his trade out of Minnesota. “[The Vikings] were kind of gearing towards a run-heavy [offense] at that time,” Diggs said. “I didn’t know it going in. I didn’t know it was going to be that way. They only would allow me to do so much. In my eyes, it wasn’t going to be in the best interest of my career.”
At the time, everybody assumed Diggs was thinking selfishly about his own numbers. The trade has worked out for him in that regard too. He led the league in receptions (127) and yards (1,525) last season. Looking back though, it’s possible Diggs knew that losing games and missing out on the playoffs would be bad for his career too.
Justin Jefferson disappearing act
In true Halloween fashion, the Minnesota Vikings made Justin Jefferson disappear for most of the night. The sophomore sensation finished the night with just two catches (4 targets) for 21 yards. Offensive coordinator, Klint Kubiak, tried to get Justin involved early. But Cousins missed JJ on a 1st half deep shot and the Vikings never went back to the well again.
Like usual, the team went into ultra conservative Mike Zimmer mode and played not to lose rather than playing to win. It didn’t work, obviously.
At the end of the day, Kirk Cousins and the Vikings coaching staff had no faith in themselves to drive the ball down the field. How bad was it? C.J. Ham, the fullback, actually finished with more catches (3) than Justin Jefferson (2). He would probably never say it because he’s not you classic “diva” receiver but JJ can’t be happy with that type of opportunity.
Kirk threw the ball 35 times and only three of those passes were 15+ yards.— Brett Kollmann (@BrettKollmann) November 1, 2021
Extremely hard to win football games while doing that in the modern NFL. https://t.co/JBGDUoR2hs
The Vikings have Dalvin Cook, Justin Jefferson, and Adam Thielen.— Mark Poulose (@MarkPoulose) November 1, 2021
They have run two screen passes to CJ Ham (for losses) in the last two drives.
That doesn’t make sense.
The next Diggs?
Justin Jefferson has shown no signs of wanting out and Adam Thielen is “one of us”, but that doesn’t mean they’ll accept an offense that’s more conservative than a 1920 housewife’s dress. These are star receivers playing behind a $35 million quarterback who isn’t trusted to throw the ball down the field. Who knows, the game plan might not even allow aggressiveness. That can’t possibly be in the best interest of anyone’s career,
When the 2021 Minnesota Vikings inevitably go 8-9 and barely miss the playoffs, it could be decision time for the Wilf family. Either fire Mike Zimmer or waste some of the best offensive weapons in the NFL. That shouldn’t be a difficult choice.
Cooper Carlson | Minnesota Sport Fan