It's crazy to the general public that the Vikings have improved since Cousins went down for the season. It hasn't suprised Birdman's Blog even a little bit. I bought a bottle of champagne back in 2018 when the Vikings signed Cousins purely to pop it in celebration for the day he was officially a member of another team. 6 years later, he's unfortunately still with the team, but we are closer to poppin' the bubbly! In just the past 2 games with Josh Dobbs under center, not knowing the playbook or his teammates names... and without Christian Darrisaw, Justin Jefferson, KJ Osborn, and other starters... the Vikings have averaged 29 ppg! In the first 8 games, with Cousins as the starter, the Vikings averaged only 21 ppg. That is an 8 point increase in ppg if you are without a calculator. It's truly remarkable what KOC and Dobbs have been able to do together. This is what I have been clamoring for the last 6 seasons. Give us any other QB and watch the Vikings take off. That is literally what they did. They got a guy 2 days before the Falcons (6th best defense in the NFL) game and he led us to our highest point total (31) all season, and the most points we have scored since the Colts game in 2022. Last week, Dobbs and the Vikings took a 27-3 lead against the Saints (4th best defense in the NFL) until the Vikings went into conservative mode allowing the Saints to get back into the game, but eventually win 27-19.
There is something special about this 2023 Vikings team that has the entire NFL community turning their heads. The majority of this success has to go to KOC, Flores, and Kwesi. The 2 coaches and our GM have done a remarkable job of turning this season around after a 1-4 start, to now being 6-4. I personally don't see this slowing down anytime soon. The combination of a NOW explosive offense (without JJ so far) and the stifling Flores led defense is going to take this team further than most people are thinking. If I was a Lions fan, I would not feel comfortable about walking away with the division anymore. I am not saying the Vikings are going to win out, the NFL can be weird week to week. Teams are going to have down days and will lose sometimes, but the Vikings remaining schedule is looking much better now that Joe Burrow was ruled out for the season. Of the remaining games that look tough on paper, the 2 games against the Lions will essentially determine the division winner. We have the Broncos, Bears, Raiders, Bengals, Lions, Packers, Lions. I think best case we finish 13-4 (that's a true possibility), and worst case we finish 10-7. I just don't see us losing to the Bears, Raiders, Bengals, or Packers at this point. I think we end up with 11 or 12 wins.
In Week 11, our Vikings will travel to Denver to face the recently surging Broncos. The Vikings have the longest active winning streak at 5 games, while Denver is coming into this game on a 3 game win streak over the Packers, Chiefs, and Bills. Don't get me wrong, this will be a tough game on Sunday Night Football at Mile High Stadium. Sean Payton (Vikings mortal enemy) is a solid coach, but I do think we are much better than Denver. It will be a close game at the start, but the Vikings will pull away. If the Vikings can get to 24 points, I dont think the Broncos can match that given the way the Vikings defense has been playing. I am predicting a 30-13 victory for the Vikings. This is a Birdman's Blog special prediction, because the last time the Vikings beat a team by 3+ scores (17+ points) came on December 15th of 2019. The Broncos are coming off 2 very deceptive wins against the Chiefs and Bills (might miss the playoffs). They caught both teams at the right time and the Chiefs are a division rival... anything can happen in those matchups. Fun fact: Joshua Dobbs is the best QB the Vikings have had since Case Keenum. Let's keep this season and team success ROLLIN! GO VIKINGS!