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What to do with Kirk Cousins in Week 5 fantasy football

Cousins keeps his quest to finish the season under 3,000 passing yards on fewer than 400 attempts active. Even in a weekend in which Minnesota faces a bad passing-defense, can Cousins step up and torch it? We take a look at Cousins’ upside for his Week 5 game against the Giants.

Kirk Cousins of the Minnesota Vikings looks to pass during a game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 29, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

So it looks like the man of the three-year, $84 million, first QB fully-guaranteed deal might not be as good as to cover that price and fulfill the Vikings expectations. Who would have said? Even after a 2-2 start to the season, Cousins has been fairly mediocre. There is only one thing going Cousins’ way, and that is stability. Through four games, he has four pretty similar performances so far in terms of his production: two games out the top-24 QBs and two inside of it, with an average of 13.6 fantasy points per game and not a single game finishing over/under two points from that mark. Predictable production is good, mediocre one is not. And Cousins falls in that second group.

Looking at Minnesota’s roster and the weapons they have on offense, it doesn’t make much sense to put on a full-rushing scheme every single week. Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen both finished as WR1 in 2018 fantasy leagues. This season they’re barely low-end WR3 because of the Vikings’ game plans and Cousins mediocre numbers. Cousins has attempted more than 30 passes two times and completed more than 15 only once. He has two 230-yard games but also had an unbelievable under-100-yard outing in Week 1, and overall he’s thrown three touchdowns in four games. Dalvin Cook alone has five touchdowns already, and Minnesota is banking on him weekly to save them on the ground, but you saw what happened when Chicago limited him to 35 yards last weekend. Either Cousins steps up his game and starts looking—at least—as an average quarterback, or Minnesota won’t be able to do much.

Fantasy football analysis, Minnesota Vikings QB Kirk Cousins

The Vikings can’t make it clearer. They’re going to run until their legs fall off, and then, maybe, pass the ball. This week against the Giants should be a good time to put Cousins in the spotlight and allow him to show more than he has so far. The problem is that neither Cousins nor Minnesota seems to be willing to make that change. New York is allowing the fifth-most fantasy points per game to QBs (25.8), but Cousins hasn’t even got closer to that mark in any of his four games. The Giants are also giving up the fourth-most points to WRs (43.3 per game), but they’re above-average at stopping RBs (13th-best 21.2 points per game). All that information makes it clear: you are probably beating the Giants if you go through the air. And Minnesota probably will, but just when truly needed. Once the Vikings take the lead (they are 5.5-point favorites), forget about seeing Cousins risk anything and prepare to watch Cook run all around the field. Good chance, good matchup, bad game script, bad coaches’ scheme. Fade Cousins.

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