Sunday, October 18, 2009
Halftime: Vikings 14, Ravens 3
By Kevin Seifert
Posted by ESPN.com’s Kevin Seifert
MINNEAPOLIS -- A few halftime observations from the Metrodome, where the score has changed only marginally since the last time we checked in:
- Minnesota finished the half without two of its top three cornerbacks. Antoine Winfield was sidelined with what the team's radio broadcast reported to be a turf toe injury, while nickel back Benny Sapp has a shoulder stinger/concussion. The Vikings have not acknowledged either injury as required per NFL rules. Regardless, that left left Karl Paymah as a first-team cornerback and Husain Abdullah at the nickel. The Ravens victimized Paymah at least three times in single coverage, and that had something to do with Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco throwing for 119 yards in the second quarter.
- That said, the Vikings have to be happy to have only given up a field goal on the Ravens’ final drive. Baltimore had the ball at the 12-yard line with 12 seconds to play but didn’t take a shot at the end zone. Instead, Flacco threw a checkdown pass to tailback Ray Rice. The Ravens called timeout with six seconds remaining but had no choice but to kick a 29-yard field goal.
- The Vikings offense hasn’t done much since converting its first two possessions into touchdowns. They gained 107 yards and had seven first downs on those first two drives. Since then, they have 54 yards and one first down over four drives. The Ravens have done a better job of getting a pass rush out of their run-stacked defensive front.
- Tailback Adrian Peterson has 50 yards but only nine carries in the game. I would expect a steadier diet of him in the second half.