Final stock up, stock down report of the Vikings’ 2020 NFL season

Jack White
·3 min read

In terms of playoff implications, the Vikings did not have anything to play for on Sunday against the Lions.

But the team still played a good game and pulled off the victory, moving to 7-9. Minnesota ended the year on a high note and now it’s time to assess what happened in the game.

The Vikings won 37-35. The offense put up points and the defense gave up big plays, so it wasn’t a huge departure from what happened most of the year.

Plenty of Vikings players stepped up. See whose stock went up and whose stock went down for the final time this 2020 NFL season.

Stock up: QB Kirk Cousins

Photo: Tim Fuller/USA TODAY Sports

The Vikings ran over the Lions defense the first time these two played. This time, the team let Kirk Cousins pick apart the Detroit defense. That's exactly what he did, going for 405 passing yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions.

Stock down: The Vikings secondary

Syndication: Detroit Free Press

The Minnesota secondary was beaten on pass plays over the top pretty consistently in the game. Detroit QB Matthew Stafford finished with 293 passing yards, three touchdowns and one interception. If it wasn't for Harrison Smith picking off that pass, it would have been hard to find a ton of highlights for the Vikings secondary. That's unfortunately been a familiar theme this season.

Stock up: RB Alexander Mattison

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings RB Alexander Mattison started the game against the Falcons and did not look very good. This game, he received the start again, due to Dalvin Cook's father, James Cook, passing away. Mattison looked better in relief this time out. He had 95 rushing yards and two total touchdowns.

Stock down: K Dan Bailey's job security

Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn/USA TODAY Sports

Bailey missed an extra point and a field goal on Sunday, putting to close what's been a disappointing season for him. Bailey was perfect against the Bears in Week 15, but he ended the season with missed kicks in the last two games. Minnesota has to ask itself this question in the offseason: Should the team hope that Bailey returns to his accuracy level in 2019, or has he hit a wall? If it's the latter, then the team might have to move on.

Stock up: LS Andrew DePaola

Photo: Raj Mehta/USA TODAY Sports

Andrew DePaola played well as the Vikings long snapper. The team waived long snapper Austin Cutting after some errant snaps. DePaola not only snapped well in the game, but after the Lions' return man Jamal Agnew fumbled, DePaola recovered to get the Vikings offense back on the field. In a year of chaotic special teams, DePaola added some stability.

Stock up: WR Justin Jefferson's rookie season

Photo: Duane Burleson/AP Photo

Jefferson broke the Vikings' franchise record for receiving yards as a rookie and the league-wide record in the Super Bowl era. Jefferson has emerged as not just one of the best players in his draft class, but one of the best receivers in the NFL. He was further rewarded for it on Sunday.