MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Minnesota Vikings have coined a new rally phrase after getting the run game going last Sunday in a win over the Detroit Lions.

In his return from a hamstring injury, Dalvin Cook nearly scored on a long run. Instead, he got tripped up and gained 70 yards. Cook finished the day with 89 yards rushing as part of a collective 128 yards on the ground.

As the team emphasized all week in practices, they were “pounding the beef.” The concept is explained in a story on the Vikings’ web site.

So is it a trend of things to come the rest of the season or a flash in the pan? It’s too early to know yet, but a healthy Cook goes a long way in running the ball successfully. The Vikings are currently 29th in the NFL, averaging 91.7 yards per game. They’ve only had one 100-yard rusher in a single game this season. Latavius Murray rushed for 155 yards against the Arizona Cardinals.

Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins summed up what Mike Zimmer’s new phrase really means: “We need to pound the beef. You know, like when you tenderize the meat with a hammer. You pound it and soften it, and it enables you to have softer beef. We have to do that to the Lions defense, tenderize it, keep pounding it until they break and we can run the football successfully.”

It became the theme in practices leading up to the win over the Lions. It includes everything from the running backs running hard, to offensive linemen winning their assignments and opening run lanes.

If the Vikings run game continues to have success the rest of the season, we’ll know it’s because they’re “pounding the beef.”

It’s not the first time the Vikings have tried a rallying cry. They put together the hashtag #BringItHome when they reached the NFC title game, with it being a chance for the Vikings to play in their home stadium for the Super Bowl. It took off on social media, though it didn’t result on the field with the Vikings losing to the Philadelphia Eagles, 38-7.

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