• What has happened to the Vikings defense? In coach Mike Zimmer’s first four seasons, the Vikings gave up 320 yards per game, the third-best mark in the NFL. This year they are giving up 381.5 yards, which ranks 21st in the NFL, and the Rams’ 556 yards were the most vs. the Vikings since Zimmer’s arrival in 2014.
• Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter said he knows the team has to regroup before going to Philadelphia next weekend. “It’s a really important week coming up. We have a few days off to get ready, get ourselves better, get all the dings and our team fresh again. We just have to go in there and fix our mistakes and move on from [Thursday].”
• Kirk Cousins’ 1,387 passing yards are the most ever for a Vikings quarterback through four games. Daunte Culpepper had 1,349 in 2004.
• Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck on what he expects when they face the Hawkeyes at home Saturday: “Iowa is a very good football team and played Wisconsin very tough. They’re coming into our place, one of the best rivalries in college football and one of the best rivalries in the Big Ten. We’re excited. We hope everybody comes out and supports us.”
• If this is indeed Joe Mauer’s final weekend as a major league baseball player, he will retire with the most career hits, doubles, RBI and walks by any player at Target Field.
• Collegiate Baseball ranked the Gophers’ 2018 recruiting class No. 37 in the nation. They were the No. 1 Big Ten program.
• Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau on what he has seen so far from draft picks Josh Okogie and Keita Bates-Diop. “They are very serious-minded, hardworking, they want to learn, and they’re both defensive-minded, long, they both can shoot the ball and play multiple type positions. They’re both the type of player we’re looking for.”