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Minnesota Vikings’ Kirk Cousins joins Hall of Fame company with start to the season

Vincent Frank

Among Pro Bowl quarterbacks in the NFL, Minnesota Vikings veteran Kirk Cousins joins Derek Carr of the Las Vegas Raiders as being the most divisive.

Despite putting up some solid numbers in his first three seasons in Minneapolis, some see Cousins as a garbage-time quarterback. That is to say, someone who fills up the box score when his team is down multiple scores in the fourth quarter.

Thus far this season, that has in no way been the case. Kirk Cousins just led the Vikings to an impressive home win over Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks — outplaying his counterpart in the process. For Minnesota, it was a must win after two difficult losses to open the 2021 NFL season.

Related: Find out where Kirk Cousins ranks among NFL quarterbacks

Through the first three games of the season, Cousins is completing 74% of his passes for 918 yards with eight touchdowns against zero interceptions for an 118.3 quarterback rating. In the process, he’s making some history.

Kirk Cousins joins Tom Brady and Peyton Manning in exclusive club

minnesota vikings; kirk cousins off to historic start
Sep 26, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) celebrates during the second quarter against Seattle Seahawks at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

According to the Vikings’ communications department, Cousins is just the fourth quarterback in NFL history to compile a passer rating of 115-plus in his first three games (minimum 115 pass attempts).

In addition to Tom Brady and Mr. Manning, only Drew Brees fills out this list. We’re talking about one first ballot Hall of Famer and two others who will make it to Canton on their first tries.

It’s astonishing how Cousins has turned the narrative around on its head. Last week alone, he completed 30-of-38 passes for 323 yards with three touchdowns against Seattle. Those are some elite numbers right there.

Related: NFL Week 4 power rankings

He’s also having a ridiculous amount of success throwing to Minnesota’s top three receivers in that of Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen and the impressive K.J. Osborn. When targeting that trio, Kirk Cousins is completing 75% of his passes with seven touchdowns and zero interceptions for an otherworldly 132.8 rating.

Cousins’ next opportunity to prove himself will come Sunday at home against an elite-level Cleveland Browns defense led by the dominating Myles Garrett.