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Stats That Stood Out: Raiders at Vikings

This edition will be quite a departure from last week's edition with long runs and improbable completions that stood out as superlatives across the league, but this one follows a victory.

Minnesota wasn't perfect but was consistently good throughout its 34-14 win on Sunday over Oakland, starting strong and finishing stronger. After Minnesota built a 21-point lead less than four minutes into the second quarter, the Vikings never really let the Raiders back into the game.

Led by a powerful showing by the offensive line, the run game racked up a season-high 211 yards, and the defense shut down the Raiders on the ground and pressured QB Derek Carr.

Kirk Cousins was super-efficient, completing 15 of 21 passes (71.4 percent) for 174 yards and a touchdown with zero turnovers. He added 16 yards on four rushes and made plays on- and off-schedule.

Here are three stats that stood out:

1. Give 'em 5

The Vikings stayed ahead of the chains by getting solid gains that were peppered with explosive runs and passes as well as largely avoiding negative plays.

Cousins got tripped up by the line on the first snap of the game for a loss of 4, but the Raiders didn't record a sack or a tackle for loss on the day.

What's more, Minnesota's offense gained 5 or more yards on 26 of its 59 non-victory-formation snaps for a percentage of 44.1. Throw in the fact that two of Minnesota's four touchdowns occurred on 1-yard runs, and that rate climbs higher.

Conversely, the Vikings totaled five tackles for loss, plus a stop for no gain on a fourth-and-1 to essentially ice the game.

The Raiders had 26 gains of 5 or more yards on 58 offensive plays, but seven of those occurred on Oakland's final possession, an eight-play, 75-yard touchdown drive against Minnesota's reserves with less than four minutes left in the game.

2. Getting home in a hurry

Eric Wilson started in place of Anthony Barr and led the Vikings with 11 tackles (press box stats) and 2.0 sacks.

Wilson was awarded the first when Carr was scrambling and gave himself up one-yard behind the line of scrimmage.

He showed his ability to blitz in the fourth quarter, screaming through the line untouched for a sack that cost Oakland 15 yards and forced a 51-yard field goal attempt that hit the right upright.

According to Next Gen Stats, Wilson reached Carr in 3.12 seconds, which is the seventh-fastest time of any player in a Week 3 game (does not include Monday's contest between Chicago and Washington).

Everson Griffen also got home in a hurry, sacking Carr in 3.44 seconds, which ranked as the 19th fastest time in Week 3.

View the Vikings in "Big Head Mode" following the 34-14 victory over the Oakland Raiders in Week 3.

3. Above average separation

Irv Smith, Jr., was one of the young players who was able to make a significant contribution in Sunday's win.

The tight end led Minnesota with 60 yards on three catches to go along with an 11-yard reception by Kyle Rudolph for the Vikings tight ends.

According to Next Gen Stats, Rudolph led the Vikings with 6.53 yards of separation from the closest defender, and Smith ranked second with an average separation of 4.73 yards. The league average is 2.83 yards.

Adam Thielen's average separation Sunday was 2.06 yards, and Stefon Diggs' was 1.77 yards.

All of that to say, if Vikings opponents place their focus on Thielen and Diggs or direct more attention toward Minnesota's effective run game, there could be more and more opportunities for high-percentage throws — and nice gains — elsewhere.