A Victorious Fourth Quarter
The Fourth quarter started off with a bang. On a third and six, Christian Ponder threw a nice pass to Kyle Rudolph who got some blocking from Michael Jenkins on a walk-in touchdown. Then, with a 12 points lead, Leslie Frazier called for a two point conversion which was successful when Adrian Peterson pounded it up the gut.
A stupid late hate from Mistral Raymond gave the Lions a fresh set of downs after the defense seemed to be on top of the Lions offensive plans. Then, Mikel Leshoure gashed the defense across midfield which was followed by a decent catch from Calvin Johnson.
On the very next play, Johnson made another leaping catch inside the five and then another stupid penalty struck as Jasper Brinkley delivered a helmet-to-helmet hit on Johnson. That play was followed up by an all-too-easy catch on by Titus Young on a slant in front of A.J. Jefferson.
A pair of positive runs from Peterson was then followed by a tough non-call on a pass to Kyle Rudolph and the Vikings were set to punt, which Stephen Logan returned for 27 yards, and may have gone for a touchdown if not for a Chris Kluwe touchdown.
Chad Greenway led the defense, aided by an important holding call, in holding the Lions offense to a three and out and they were denied the chance to even kick a field goal.
The Vikings drive started out great with a pitch to Adrian Peterson that went for long yardage, but then a delay of game penalty set them back. The very next play, however, Peterson took the ball to the right side and went 61 yards, high stepping for the score. This is Peterson’s fourth 100+ yard rushing game in a row.
The Lions, of course, started out by gunning towards Calvin Johnson. Jamarca Sanford, however, punched the ball out of Johnson’s clutch and Antoine Winfield recovered it.
Then came even more yards from Peterson, on a cutback to the left, that went for a big gain on first down, getting the Vikings into field goal range. More Peterson, a Lions penalty, and then more Peterson set up an easy field goal for Blair Walsh who was able to extend the Vikings lead to 17 points.
The Vikings then went into a bend don’t break defense allowing Stafford to dink and dunk his way down the field, with Erin Henderson coming up with some nice plays on a few occasions. Harrison Smith and Josh Robinson, both rookies, had some good defensive plays on the series as well.
At the two minute warning, the Lions just entered into the red zone on a Calvin Johnson completion, but the Metrodome knew that even the Vikings couldn’t blow this one. On the first play following the two minute warning, Calvin Johnson caught a short pass and was able to push for a touchdown that cut the Vikings lead to 10.
A pooch kick, successfully recovered by Marcus Sherels, pretty much signaled the end of the end for the Lions. A couple of short runs from Peterson drained the Lions of their remaining timeouts and then a quarterback bootleg to the left ended in a personal foul, after Ponder made the rare choice to slide feet first, gave the Vikings a first down and the Lions a nail in their coffin.
Ponder was then able to kneel down and take the victory, which was much needed for the Vikings who now get to head into the bye week with a 6-4 record (2-0 against NFC North teams) and some positive things to build off of.