Justin Jefferson, Vikings look to bounce back after ’embarrassing’ loss to Cowboys

The 8-2 Vikings got thumped, 40-3, Sunday by the Dallas Cowboys ushering in talk that Minnesota’s hot start to the season was simply the product of a cupcake schedule.

Nothing went right for the Vikes Sunday. Kirk Cousins was sacked a career-high seven times, and the defense didn’t force a punt until the Cowboys’ eighth drive of the contest.

Star receiver Justin Jefferson, who was held to 33 yards on three catches, called the defeat “a disaster all around” on Monday.

“I mean, it just sucks that we lost this bad,” Jefferson said Monday. “If we just lost by three, seven, 10 points, it wouldn’t be as bad. People lose games. We’re not expected to go undefeated for the rest of the season. Things happen. It’s the NFL. There’s good teams that we’re playing. But it’s just the fact that we lost by 37 points at home. It’s just embarrassing being in that type of situation and we just didn’t play good in all phases. That’s what really killed us and made us act the way we’re acting now.

“We’ve just got to get that taste out of our mouth. We didn’t play good at all. We just want to get to Thursday [and] have a chance to get that taste out of our mouth and play better.”

Following an emotional overtime win over Buffalo in Week 10, a letdown isn’t a huge surprise. But the way in which Dallas dismantled Minnesota was stunning.

Jefferson made it clear he believes coach Kevin O’Connell should have adjusted, going to the quick-passing game after it was apparent the Vikings couldn’t block the Cowboys’ front seven.

“I mean, of course I wish we had adjusted faster throughout the game,” Jefferson said. “Getting the ball out quicker, not letting Micah Parsons and the rest of that D-line get a chance to get back there to Kirk (Cousins). So it’s just things we need to learn from. This is a new team. This is a new coaching staff. We have new players on this team. We’re all still learning each other. We’re still all learning how to play with each other. It’s just a lesson learned.”

The good news for Jefferson & Co. is they don’t have much time to dwell on the depressing defeat.

The Vikings host New England on Thanksgiving night. However, things don’t get much easier as the Pats bring the NFL’s sack leader Matt Judon and one of the top defenses in the league to Minnesota to face primetime Kirk Cousins.

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