The most notable of these backs is Cook, who flourished in a Vikings offense that committed to two-tight end sets and allowed Cook to build up speed on his carries. Cook averaged 10.93 mph at the line of scrimmage on runs in 2019, the second-highest mark among running backs in the NFL with a minimum of 100 rushes. That build-up helped him rip off 25 runs of 10-plus yards and put together a rush efficiency – the distance traveled by the ball carrier on a run play divided by the net yards gained – of 4.2, proving the angles taken on zone runs inside and outside (such as stretches) weren’t for naught.
Worth mentioning is the fact that Vikings running back Alexander Mattison, who finished his rookie campaign with 100 carries for 462 yards and a touchdown, “barely missed the mark” with just 15 rushes of 10-plus yards but would have been included on the list otherwise.
After Jackson and Cook, Shook ranked 49ers RB Raheem Mostert, Cardinals RB Kenyan Drake, Packers RB Aaron Jones, Broncos RB Phillip Lindsay, Colts RB Marlon Mack, Falcons RB Todd Gurley (who played for the Rams in 2019), Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey and Seahawks RB Chris Carson.
Hunter tabbed as Vikings ‘most underrated player’ by PFF
Vikings fans have known for quite some time that defensive end Danielle Hunter is something special.
Last season, Hunter seemed to finally gain some national recognition when he became the youngest player (25 years and 40 days) to reach 50 career sacks since they became an official stat in 1982.
But he continues fly under the radar. Analytics site Pro Football Focus recently named each NFL team’s “most underrated player” heading into the 2020 season, and Ben Linsey pointed to Hunter for the Vikings. Linsey wrote: