The television broadcast captured Cousins smiling and laughing with an opposing coach in the wake of the fanfare that ensued at Ford Stadium in Detroit after Jared Goff capped a 75-yard touchdown drive to end a 15-game winless streak for the Lions.
The Vikings, still contending for a playoff spot, had an eight-game winning streak against their NFC North foe snapped, leaving a bad taste in the fan base’s mouth.
Former Vikings quarterback Tommy Kramer was among those peeved by Cousins’ chipperness after the game.
Kramer called out Cousins after the game, tweeting, “I’m fine with shaking hands with the opposing team, but smiling and laughing after a loss like that? ‘For the love of the game is gone.’ ”
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Kramer’s comment was met with majority approval in the comments. However, some fans felt that it was misdirected.
Another Case of What Could Have Been
It’s been the same song and dance this season with the Vikings (5-7) falling again by a single possession. All seven of their losses have been settled by a combined 28 points this season. Cousins has led several late drives this season, but to no avail.
On Sunday, it appeared the Vikings were ready to settle for a go-ahead field goal on their final drive after running the ball five times in the final four minutes of the game.
Cousins connected with Justin Jefferson on third-and-3 to the Vikings ahead by four. The Vikings failed a two-point conversion for the third time against the Lions on Sunday after Cousins’ throw to Jefferson sailed over the sophomore receiver’s head.
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Zimmer Addresses Costly Point Chasing
It was the right call to go for two on their final drive. However, the earlier attempts of chasing points came back to bite the Vikings in the end.
“We weren’t playing well, so I was trying to get something going,” coach Mike Zimmer said in a postgame press conference. “I had confidence in the offense to hit on that.”
An inability to finish drives plagued the Vikings throughout the majority of the game. The Vikings didn’t score a touchdown until the six-minute mark of the third quarter after settling for three field goals beforehand.
“A difficult loss,” Cousins said after the game, per Pioneer Press reporter Chris Tomasson. “A tale of two halves.”
Jefferson described the team as feeling “sick” after giving up a loss to the Lions.
“It’s tough. We didn’t play a great first half,” Jefferson said, per Tomasson. “We just got to finish out drives, play better.”
Sliding to ninth in the NFC standings, the Vikings are two spots out of the last wild card entering the Sunday night game. Before the Lions loss, the Vikings had nearly a 50% chance at making the postseason, per FiveThirtyEight.
The Vikings’ chances just dropped to 29% following Sunday’s loss. They play the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday Night Football next in a matchup that won’t drastically improve their odds moving forward.