Mike Zimmer says Kirk Cousins played his best game as a Viking in comeback against Broncos

The Minnesota Vikings pulled off an improbable comeback against the Denver Broncos on Sunday after being down 20-0 at halftime. The Vikings' 27-23 victory was the first time in five years -- a span of 100 games including the playoffs -- that an NFL team has won after trailing by 20 or more points at halftime. 

Quarterback Kirk Cousins was outstanding, and passed for 319 yards and three touchdowns in the comeback effort. His completion percentage of 82.9% was his second-highest since signing with the Vikings prior to the 2018 season, behind 88.5% against the Washington Redskins in Week 8. 

After losing two of their first four games, the Vikings have now won six out of their last seven, and are currently just behind the Green Bay Packers in the NFC North. Cousins has had several incredible performances over the past month, but head coach Mike Zimmer thinks what he did on Sunday was special.

"Cousins played fantastic, probably the best game he's played since he's been here," said Zimmer, according to the team's official website. 

It's a bold statement, but it's a correct observation for several reasons. Cousins passed for just 58 yards in the first half. The lowly 3-6 Broncos were rolling in U.S. Bank Stadium, and it appeared that the Vikings were doomed to regress in the second half of the season -- just like they have so many times before. Instead, Cousins came out of the locker room for the second half and led four touchdown drives in a row to complete the comeback. It's not often that a team scores every time they touch the ball in a half, but Minnesota was absolutely unstoppable in the third and fourth quarters. 

The other reason why this should be considered Cousins' best game as a Viking is because he faced adversity and came out on top. The much-maligned quarterback disappointed in his first season as a Viking last year. Despite having one of the best NFL rosters on paper, the Vikings missed the playoffs and Cousins struggled when playing from behind and with no momentum. To put it simply, Cousins wouldn't show up when it mattered, and while this was just a regular-season game against a lesser opponent, Cousins showed up when it mattered on Sunday. He proved that he can indeed step up and take over a game, which gives Vikings fans hope for a deep postseason run. 

In 11 games this season, Cousins has passed for 2,756 yards, 21 touchdowns and three interceptions. He certainly has silenced the critics, but coach Zimmer never gave any credence to the criticism. 

"I don't worry too much about the narrative," Zimmer said. "I don't care what they think or say. I just want him to keep playing the way he is."

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