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Adam Thielen: I wrote last week that Thielen needed to do more than catch highlight-reel passes. Well, he did, and even topped his touchdown catch against the Chicago Bears to boot. Kudos for the kid from Detroit Lakes are in order; he had simply a fantastic game. — Robb Jeffries

Kirk Cousins: During the fourth quarter Sunday, I screen-shotted the live stats page from the Vikings-Cowboys game for posterity’s sake. Following his perfectly placed 39-yard touchdown pass to rookie Justin Jefferson, Cousins had a perfect 158.3 passer rating. He finished the game with a rating of 140.1, completing 22 of 30 passes for 314 yards and three TDs. No, he didn’t lead the Vikings to a game-winning TD or even a game-tying field goal, but he didn’t cause a wide-open Jefferson to drop a pass on their final possession and he didn’t cause the offensive line to make him run for his life on multiple occasions. Like many Vikings fans, we’ve called out Cousins’ terrible play when he’s been terrible. But if we’re going to put Jefferson and Thielen in the Pro Bowl and/or All-Pro conversations, we have to acknowledge the guy who gets them the ball. — Jason Feldman

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KJ Osborn: Remember when Marcus Sherels returned punts and kicks for the Vikings? The days of a solid 8-10 yards per return seem so long ago, as do the days of not having to doubt if the kick returner was even going to catch the ball. Now everyone watching the Vikings has to hold their breath until the ball is caught, then hold their breath again until the returner is tackled without fumbling. Either Osborn struggles as badly at decision-making as he does at holding onto the ball, or the Vikings coaches must have told him to not bother trying to return a kickoff. At one point in Sunday’s loss he let one bounce barely a yard into the end zone. Roster spots are valuable in the NFL. Surely anyone in purple could stand at the goal line with their arms stretched out to their sides every time the other team kicks off. The Vikings changed their long snapper last week. Changing their returner would be a good idea this week. — Feldman

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Kris Boyd: Boyd wasn't just riding the struggle bus on Sunday; he built his own from scratch and drove it off a cliff. The recipient of a fake punt pass from Britton Colquitt nullified the big play by failing to get set on the outside of the punt formation — Boyd was too busy doing a happy dance at how wide open he was. When that forced Minnesota to punt for real, he drew another penalty by shoving a blocker in the back to set up Dallas with the ball near midfield. The Cowboys scored on that drive to take the lead. And when he had the chance on the game's final drive to atone for prior transgressions, he dropped an errant Andy Dalton pass that Boyd got his hands on and bounced off the numbers on the front of his jersey. Somebody suspend his license, please. — Jeffries