Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook is having a phenomenal year, and he should be garnering some NFL MVP attention for it.
Who has the most yardage from scrimmage this year?
The obvious guess would be Christian McCaffrey. It would be incorrect.
While McCaffrey has played one fewer game than the answer, the correct choice is still Dalvin Cook. Cook has been the engine of the Minnesota Vikings, a 6-2 contender in the NFC North after they handled business against the Washington Redskins on Thursday night, 19-9.
All told, Cook has 1,116 total yards, putting him on pace for better than 2,200. The all-time record is held by Chris Johnson of the Tennessee Titans, who went for 2,509 yards in 2009. Still, should Cook hit the exact pace of 2,232 yards, he would check in 16th on the list. Not bad.
Cook was fantastic once more on Thursday, rushing for 98 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries. The former Florida State star also added five catches and 73 yards, giving him and his fantasy owners another night of glee.
If the Vikings continue their assault on the NFC North and find a way to win the division for the second time in three years, Cook will garner considerable attention. The two factors which do hurt him are the position he plays — a running back has only won the MVP award once since 2006 — and that he’s on a team with other high-profile weapons including receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs.
Make no mistake, Cook is a dark-horse here. But another strong half should at least have him earning some votes on ballots.