Sunday, September 26, 2010
Rapid Reaction: Vikings 24, Lions 10
By Kevin Seifert
MINNEAPOLIS -- Let's hit some quick thoughts as this 24-10 victory by Minnesota concludes.
What it means: The Minnesota Vikings managed to avoid entering their bye week 0-3, beating the Detroit Lions for the 14th consecutive time at the Metrodome. Quarterback Brett Favre threw two more interceptions, and had two other turnovers negated by Lions penalty, but took a far more conservative approach than he had in the Vikings' opening two games. He averaged a low 5.91 yards per attempt. The teams combined for 20 penalties and had several tussles broken up by officials, including one in which Lions quarterback Shaun Hill charged after Vikings defensive end Jared Allen.
Tomorrow's talker: Vikings tailback Adrian Peterson broke off a career-high 80-yard run for a touchdown in the third quarter, giving the Vikings a comfortable 14-point lead. Peterson finished with 150 yards and has 382 yards in three games this season.
Unsung hero: The Vikings defense allowed 127 yards in the fourth quarter, bringing the Lions' total to 295, but overall kept the Lions in check. In three games this season, the Vikings' defense has allowed 31 points this season. With all of the attention on Favre and the Vikings' offense, their defense has quietly kept things competitive throughout.
Injuries of note: Both teams were hit with potentially significant injuries. The Vikings lost center John Sullivan (calf) on their first offensive play. Backup Ryan Cook, who has played tackle almost exclusively in his NFL career, did an admirable job as Sullivan's replacement. Tight end Visanthe Shiancoe left in the third quarter after injuring his right hamstring. And Lions rookie tailback Jahvid Best saw only a couple of snaps after the middle of the second quarter because of a toe injury.
Critical call: As I mentioned at halftime, I was a little surprised/disappointed/miffed that the Lions didn't take at least one shot into the end zone at the end of the first half. They gained a first down at the Vikings' 15-yard line with 14 seconds remaining but waited until three seconds remained before calling a timeout. With an elite receiver like Calvin Johnson on the field, don't you want to see if he can get favorable coverage? If not, throw it away and kick the field goal.
What's next: The Lions play at the Green Bay Packers next Sunday. The Vikings have a bye.