Zimmer on Cousins/O-Line Playing Time Saturday: “Just Depends on How I’m Feeling”

Image: Associated Press

In case you forgot (we know you didn’t), the Vikings play their first preseason game of the season on Saturday in Denver. If you were wondering how long Kirk Cousins will be in the game, Mike Zimmer is here to help you out…. kind of:

Well, we got part of an answer. Sure, it’s probably the part we could have figured out ourselves, but we’ll take what we can get, right? The starting offensive line is already banged up and you are paying Cousins $85 Million over the next 3 years. I wouldn’t have been upset if Zimmer had come out and said he wasn’t going to play him at all on Saturday, until the offensive line can prove they are able to protect him. I like Trevor Simeon but there’s no Super Bowl Homeboy for the Vikings without Kirk Cousins.

However, Zimmer’s line concerning the amount of playing time Cousins and the O-line get being dictated by “how he’s feeling at the time” is quite interesting. First, it’s a terrible idea (see last paragraph). Second, that could have so many different scenarios that play out….

Here are the ones that came to my head right when I saw the tweet from Goessling and as I typed out this post:

Best case scenario:

Kirk leads a stifling 10-15 play first drive that ends with a touchdown pass to [insert receiver here]. Everyone high fives and puts on their baseball hat as we talk for the next week about what hotel we should book our Super Bowl rooms for.

We know the worst case scenario and, although I’m not superstitious, I am a little stitious, so we’re moving on.

In between scenarios:


Cousins and the offense don’t look like the ‘98 team but they move the ball. They may or many not get points in this scenario. It lasts a drive, maybe two at the most, before Zimmer feels ok about the first outing with a new quarterback and he shuts them down for the night.

Not so good:

A.) Cousins and the offense struggle to move the ball but the offensive line is competent enough to give Zimmer the peace of mind to keep Cousins in for the entire first quarter, while he and the first team offense try to gain some continuity. I’d be incredibly shocked to see Kirk in the game any longer than one quarter.

B.) Cousins and the offense struggle to move the ball and we are all fearing for Kirk’s life every time the ball touches his precious fingertips. This forces Mike Zimmer to take him out early and this is Vikings Nation for the entire week:


Again, I’ll take anything but worst-case scenario.

Eric Strack
Minnesota Sports Fan @RealMNSportsFan

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