These three games could cost the Minnesota Vikings dearly on their 2022 season schedule.
Minnesota employs a Pro Bowl-caliber franchise quarterback in Kirk Cousins. Not only that, but he finally has an offensive-minded head coach in the Twin Cities with Kevin O’Connell coming over from the Los Angeles Rams. O’Connell may be a first-time head coach, but he and Cousins have a previous working relationship from their time together in Washington. So things are looking up!
However, the NFL did the Vikings no favors with where it scheduled these three games for them.
Minnesota Vikings: 3 instances where the NFL made their schedule harder
3. Week 2: at Philadelphia Eagles (Monday, Sept. 19)
Admittedly, there are not a ton of questionable games on the Vikings’ schedule, but one that does stand out to some degree is who they are playing in Week 2. Minnesota will have to travel to the City of Brotherly Love to take on the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday Night Football. This is the second of two non-early-window starts for Cousins. Two losses may only add to his “narrative”.
Although the Vikings have all offseason to prepare for the arch rival Green Bay Packers coming to town in Week 1, they only have a week to adjust to whatever Nick Sirianni and the boys come up with in Philadelphia. One could argue this game could potentially decide playoff positioning at regular season’s end. Expect for the head-to-head tiebreaker to carry weight later in the season.
Cousins may have a strong history with the Eagles from his time in Washington, but Minnesota does not play them as frequently. Therefore, there is a decent chance the Vikings could start the year out at 0-2. Conversely, they could be 2-0 heading into Week 3’s home game vs. the division rival Detroit Lions. An extra day to prepare certainly helps, but their first two games are not easy.
This is why it is imperative for Cousins to have a strong first quarter of the season for the Vikings.