The Minnesota Vikings looked much better than most people anticipated in their opener. Dalvin Cook is the reason why:

Photo credit: Stephen Maturen / Getty Images Sport

Author: Jon Kuzma

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Leading up to the season it felt like the Minnesota Vikings were going to regress. They didnā€™t make the playoffs a year ago and Kirk Cousinsā€™ contract prevented them from making a splash in free agency. But what this team was really missing was on their roster all along.

That was Dalvin Cook and he took over against the Atlanta Falcons. Cook rushed for 111 yards and 2 touchdowns setting the tone for an offense which usually relies on the pass. By taking on such a heavy work load Cook was able to impose his will on the Falcons and minimize Kirk Cousinā€™s role. Why pass the ball 30 or 40 times per game when the Vikings can handoff to Cook and win games by playing a less risky style of football? Weā€™ve seen first hand that this team is more effective when they funnel the offense through Dalvin Cook. Now itā€™s about them staying true to their identity and sticking with the running game. Eventually Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs are going to want to open things up but thereā€™s only so much slack offensive advisor Gary Kubiak should give. Their run to pass ratio was 80% pass and 20% run against Atlanta and clearly this is the winning formula. Therefore Minnesota should make that their goal from here on out.

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Most people didn’t expect the Vikings to play as good as they did in week one.

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