Mon, 23 May 2022

Lunchbreak: NFL.com Unveils Final 2021 QB Rankings

Minnesota Vikings
15 Jan 2022, 20:37 GMT+10

Eric Smith

The 2021 regular season is over, meaning many around the league will soon recap how the past four months played out across the NFL.

(Position recaps and stats-based review stories are coming Vikings.com beginning next week, FYI.)

Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com recently posted his final quarterback rankings for the 2021 season, an exercise he had put together weekly throughout the season.

Rosenthal, the website's Around The NFL Editor, slotted Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins in the No. 13 spot in his final rankings.

He wrote:

There's this idea that Kirk Cousins is frustratingly, consistently stuck in the middle. And while that's true on the macro level, the opposite is also true. Like Cam Newton once upon a time, Cousins is consistently streaky. He's either great or terrible, and this season was no different. He played like a top-seven quarterback for a long stretch, spinning the ball downfield with incredible accuracy.

Mike Zimmer, knowing his defense was also erratic, finally asked Cousins to be more aggressive down the stretch. The team put more on Cousins' plate, which folks like me had asked for. Then he fell apart. (Sorry about that.) I think we know what Kirk Cousins is: just good enough to be better than average. He'll fool you one way or another for months at a time. Is that good enough for the Vikings?

Cousins completed 372 of 561 passes (66.3 percent) in 16 games this past season. He threw for 4,221 yards with 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions, and also ran for a score.

His quarterback rating of 104.1 tied for the fourth-best in the league with Russell Wilson.

Cousins went 8-8 as a starter in 2021, missing a Week 17 game against Green Bay because he was on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. He is 33-29-1 as a starter since arriving in Minnesota.

He signed with the Vikings as a free agent in March of 2018 and signed a contract extension with Minnesota in March of 2020. The 2022 season is the final year of his current deal, so it will be up to the future general manager and head coach of the Vikings to evaluate the QB on their own terms.

Robert Blanton hailed as hero for stopping carjacking

Former Vikings safety Robert Blanton is being hailed as a hero after thwarting an attempted carjacking earlier this week.

Kate Raddatz of WCCO (CBS) provided the details of the scary scene, which took place in Edina.

Raddatz reported:

Blanton runs Kiddie Academy in Edina with his wife, Erin. He played for the Minnesota Vikings from 2012 to 2015.

Edina Police say, on Wednesday around 4 p.m., a woman was confronted by two men outside Kiddie Academy. One of the men demanded her keys to which she complied. Police say the woman then grabbed her purse and ran toward the locked entrance of the facility.

Blanton was inside with his daughter at the time. He could see the woman struggling with the carjacker.

"I just bolted out the door," Blanton said.

When Blanton got outside, the suspect ran and jumped into a vehicle where the other carjacker was waiting.

"I was trying to pull him out and slam the door on his leg," Blanton said.

Raddatz also reported that Blanton shrugged off getting any credit for stopping the attack.

Blanton said he does not think of himself as a hero. He praised the woman for running for help.

"Definitely not a hero," he said. "I think the mom is a hero for fighting back and standing up for herself and allowing time to come and help her."

Raddatz's full report can be found here.

Blanton, a 2012 fifth-round pick, played 60 career games with the Vikings from 2012 to 2015. He started 17 games, including 13 during the 2014 season.

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