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Kirk Cousins' brain was in 'sweet spot' against Saints

Most NFL fans are pretty savvy about the value of screaming their brains out any time the enemy faces third down. And those who aren't as astute typically get eardrum-splitting cues via piped-in sound effects and overcaffeinated public address announcers screaming that it's time to become verbally unhinged.

No venue is better at this than the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

And yet it was Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins who outclassed future Hall of Famer Drew Brees on third-down plays as a 7½-point road playoff underdog in Sunday's 26-20 overtime upset.

Against the Saints' No. 6-ranked third-down defense, Cousins completed 9 of 12 passes with seven first downs, one touchdown, no turnovers and 110 yards.