It's no secret that Kirk Cousins can put his passes on the mark.
In his two seasons as a starter in Minnesota, the quarterback has ranked second and fourth, respectively, across the league in completion percentage.
He ranked second at 70.1 percent in 2018 and fourth a season ago at 69.1 percent. He is one of two passers, along with Drew Brees, to be in the top four in each of the past two seasons.
Football Outsiders took a deeper look at accuracy among quarterbacks and found that Cousins is among the league’s best in that category. Here is a breakdown of their key stat, which is called passing plus-minus.
Football Outsiders has been using game-charting data since 2006 to create a stat called passing plus-minus, which estimates how many passes a quarterback completed compared to what an average quarterback would have completed based on each throw's distance, the yards needed for a first down, and to which side of the field the pass was thrown.
This is turned into a rate stat: completion percentage over expected, or CPOE, that shows just how much more accurate a passer is than league average, adjusted for the situations the passer found himself in. Note that our CPOE might be different from other models found elsewhere on the internet because we're removing passes thrown away on purpose, batted down at the line or thrown when the quarterback was hit in motion.
Using that metric, Football Outsiders found that Cousins ranked third in passing accuracy with a CPOE of plus-6.2 percent.
Football Outsiders wrote:
Cousins, another player who benefited tremendously from play-action passing, led the league with a plus-9.3% CPOE on passes at least 10 yards downfield. The Vikings have done spectacularly well in this stat in recent years; they're the only team to have at least a plus-5.0% CPOE in each of the past five seasons, with Cousins following Case Keenum, Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater. Can Cousins make it six-for-six in 2020? The loss of Stefon Diggs hurts; Cousins' CPOE falls to plus-5.0% if you remove Diggs' targets from the equation.
View photos of Vikings players from Verizon Vikings Training Camp practice at TCO Performance Center.
Cousins has a career completion percentage of 66.9, which ranks second to Brees in league history, according to profootballreference.com.
Cousins has completed 732 of 1050 passes (69.7 percent) in Minnesota, with 56 touchdowns, 16 interceptions and a total passer rating of 103.0.
Vikings legend Reichow enjoying retirement
It's been a long time since Jerry Reichow wasn't associated with the Vikings.
In fact, this is the first summer that has hasn't been a member of the organization in one way or another.
Reichow played wide receiver in Minnesota from 1961-1964 before transitioning to a lengthy career in the scouting department. He retired at the end of the 2019 season.
Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press recently caught up with the legendary Viking about what it was like to not be involved with the Vikings during a training camp.
With the Vikings entering their 60th season, Reichow, 86, spends most of his time at his home in Santa Fe, N.M., where he lives with Carolyn, his wife of 42 years. He doesn't deny that he misses football.
"I'm always telling our scouts up there in Minnesota, 'You guys are always talking about retirement, but if you retire you better have something to do or you'll go haywire,' " said Reichow, who had been a personnel consultant for his final 14 seasons with the team.
So is Reichow bored?
"Big time," he said. "I do miss (football). And we've got this coronavirus business going on, so you can't do a heck of a lot anyway."
The Vikings acquired Reichow in a trade just a week before their inaugural season began in 1961. He was a Pro Bowler in that first season with 11 touchdown catches, and played the next three seasons in Purple.
He then transitioned to the scouting department in the summer of 1965 at the request of first Vikings Head Coach Norm Van Brocklin.
He spent the next 50-plus seasons working a myriad of roles in the personnel departments, even working his way up to the Director of Football Operations, which he held from 1975 to 1992.
Tomasson noted that the organization honored Reichow in Week 14 of the 2019 season, a home game against the Lions.
Reichow served as an honorary captain and was invited out for the coin flip. During the game, it was noted to the fans that Reichow would be retiring after 59 Minnesota seasons and [Greg] Coleman conducted an interview with him that was shown on [U.S. Bank Stadium's video boards].
"That day was an honor for me," Reichow said. "I had no idea what was going to happen. That was exciting for me. During one of the last games of the season, they bring in all the scouts, so I figured I was going up there for that."