Cook took advantage of an overly aggressive Arizona defense
The first half was not pretty at all for the Arizona Cardinals defense. Vikings running back Dalvin Cook finished the game with 131 rushing yards, with 96 of those coming in the first half.
It seemed as though the Cardinals’ defense came into the match with a mindset similar to what stopped Derrick Henry so effectively in Week 1. Swarming the line and playing with a high level of aggression worked for a back like Henry, who relies on a power running style to make yards after contact.
Cook is a totally different back, and it showed. The Vikings’ offensive line did a good job opening up holes for him to hit, and the shifty running back took advantage of Cardinals defensive players over pursuing behind the line of scrimmage to make some big plays.
The most encouraging sign was that Vance Joseph adjusted during halftime and his defense was significantly more effective against Cook in the second half.