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Monday Morning Mailbag: Trying to Find Reasons for Vikings Optimism

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View game action images as the Vikings take on the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium.

I watched the entire game against the Packers in Week 1 and against the Colts in Week 2. Tell me something positive about the Colts game. Tell me how the Vikings improve from here. We have no run defense, our offensive line has no improvement, and Kirk Cousins doesn't throw to anyone other than Adam Thielen! I want to be supportive, but they are making it hard!

— Laura Moser

Well, Dan Bailey is perfect on his pair of field goals, plus an extra point try, and the Vikings have converted four 2-point conversions to start the 2020 season!

Other than that … there haven't been many positives at all from the Vikings — mostly on offense and defense — through the first eight quarters of the season. Here's how Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer summed up his team through two games:

"Right now we're not very good at anything, so we've got to evaluate that."

And when asked what the offense could do better, running back Dalvin Cook had this reply: "Everything."

The offense, which is filled with veterans, hasn't gotten into a rhythm by running or throwing. Sunday might have been Cousins' worst start in Purple.

Defensively, they couldn't stop the run Sunday after not being able to stop the pass in Week 1. There are some new faces and inexperienced players on that side of the ball, but I don't think anyone expected this start to 2020.

But if you're looking for a reason for optimism, it is that players will hopefully be ready to get back to work as soon as possible to correct the litany of mistakes.

I don't expect the Vikings to simply fold it in, even if they're off to the first 0-2 start under Zimmer since he arrived. Both he and the players have too much pride to do that.

I've always trusted Zimmer's instincts, but when we acquired Cousins, I was not thrilled. I've never seen him as a superstar. I like him as a person and I would love to see him prove everyone (included me) wrong and that he is actually a superstar.

His stats are truly amazing, but I honestly believe that with him as our QB, I won't need to worry how much a Super Bowl ticket will cost to cheer on the Vikings.

I know it is too early in the season, but it is truly heartbreaking. Cheers from Mexico!!!

— Juan Parks

Thanks for the support from afar, Juan. It's truly appreciated. Now, some thoughts about Cousins so far in the season.

To start, there's no denying that he did not play well on Sunday. He completed 11 of 26 passes (42.3 percent) for just 113 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions.

Cousins' passer rating of 15.9 was the lowest in his career as a starter, and according to Pro Football Reference, the fourth-worst by a Vikings quarterback with at least 20 throws since the 1970 merger.

Not good at all there. But in the first two weeks of the season, the Vikings have almost essentially played from behind and have been forced to all but abandon the run game and start chucking the ball all over the field. The lack of time of possession has been glaring in this regard.

That is also the exact opposite of how the Vikings have been built, and had success, in recent years.

The Vikings want to win games by running the ball, sprinkling in effective play-action passes and playing strong defense — all while playing from ahead on the scoreboard.

The above formula is how Cousins thrives, and he's shown that in the past. The Vikings have also tailored their offense to what he does well.

But through two games, whether it's because of a stuck-in-the-mud offense or a porous defense, the Vikings have had to try and play catch-up, which goes against what they want to do and who they want to be.

At some point it's time to fire the head coach! When you come out two weeks in a row and get embarrassed, it's time for a change!

— Troy Ashfield

As I just mentioned, the Vikings have lost the first two games to start a season under Zimmer. But have we forgotten what he's done in the previous six seasons here?

Pretty much everything has gone wrong through two weeks — offense is out of sync, defense has been poor and there have been miscues on special teams.

But I'm not going to entertain the idea of firing Zimmer after two games. He's won 50 games in the past five seasons, gone to the playoffs three times and won a pair of NFC North titles. And he just signed a three-year extension.

Let's not press the panic button so fast, even if the first two weeks of the season have been tough to watch.

View pregame images as the Vikings take on the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Hi Eric. After Sunday's performance, I'd like to send a mirror to the owners, coaching staff and all the players because they need to take a good hard look at themselves and decide if they want to represent the Minnesota Vikings or continue to be an embarrassment to the league.

— Nicholas Balkou

First off, that is a lot of mirrors to mail out.

But on a serious note, and I understand your point here, I'm going to try and explain something as best I can.

For as mad as Vikings fans are on this Monday — and they have every right to be — I can assure you that players and coaches are even more frustrated and upset about what has transpired the first two weeks of the season.

These are their jobs. They are paid well to do those jobs, yes, but they also work incredibly hard and sacrifice a ton to go out there each Sunday and try to bring happiness to living rooms of their fans.

The team is likely embarrassed at the product they have put on the field through two weeks. And you can bet they're going to do all they can to get it turned around in a hurry, beginning Sunday at home against the 2-0 Titans.