Coach Mike Zimmer discusses the use of outside run plays for Vikings

Zimmer believes one way to get the Vikings' running game going is by outside zone runs. He talks about what is needed.

Minnesota's running game is still lacking this season, ranking 30th in the NFL with an average of 86.1 yards per game. Vikings coach Mike Zimmer has been talking for weeks about the need to run the ball more.

In last week's loss to New England, Minnesota appeared to finally get Dalvin Cook -- aside from his 70-yard run earlier this season -- going with 84 yards rushing. The Vikings were having success against the Patriots' defense. Cook had those 84 yards on just nine carries. Latavius Murray added 11 runs on four carries.

But once again, Minnesota abandoned the run. The Vikings had seven runs for 67 yards in the first half, a 9.6-yard average. They had six runs in the second half for 28 yards.

Zimmer was asked how the outside zone runs help a player like Cook.

"Quite honestly, it’s about stretching the defense and then hopefully get a cut back seam in there typically," Zimmer said. "It’s stretch, stretch, stretch, put your foot in the ground and get back downhill. The ball might start on this hash and it might press to outside the other hash but cut back inside the hash. It makes the defenders run and so that’s where if defenders start turning their shoulders then that’s when cut back seams occur."