General News

Lions Gobble the Vikings on Thanksgiving, Sweep the Season Series

As millions of Americans celebrated and laughed with their families on Thursday’s Thanksgiving holiday, the Minnesota Vikings’ experience this year was not so enthusiastic as they lost to the Detroit Lions for the second time in their last four games by a score of 16-13. The win gave the Lions a sweep of the season series between the two teams for the second time in the last three years.

The game remained close all day long and costly turnover by Vikings quarterback Sam Bradford late in the fourth quarter proved to be all Detroit needed to get a victory. After Lions cornerback Darius Slay intercepted a Bradford pass with less than 40 seconds remaining in the game, Detroit kicker Matt Prater hit an easy 40-yard field goal to give the Lions a win as time expired.

The outcome of this game was eerily similar to how the first matchup ended between these two teams just three weeks ago. In both games, the Vikings were leading until Detroit’s final two offensive drives of the game in which the Lions were able to tie the score and then eventually win the game on their final offensive possession.

Besides the interception, Bradford had himself a pretty decent day. He finished Thursday having completed 31 of his 37 passes for 224 yards. However, he did fail to throw a touchdown for the first time in his 10 career starts as a member of Minnesota’s roster.

Running back Jerick McKinnon led the Vikings in rushing on Thursday with a measly 31 yards on nine carries. Minnesota is in dire need for all-pro running back Adrian Peterson to return to the lineup sooner than later.

Vikings tight Kyle Rudolph was Bradford’s go-to guy all day long as the pass catcher finished the game against the Lions with a season-high nine catches for 64 yards. Wide receiver Adam Thielen also contributed to the offense on Thursday with eight receptions for 53 yards.

On defense, safety Andrew Sendejo led Minnesota with eight total tackles while linebacker Anthony Barr was able to register his first sack since the Vikings’ Week 3 win over the Carolina Panthers.

Minnesota’s best player on Thursday could have arguably been punter Jeff Locke. In his fourth season with the Vikings, Locke averaged almost 50 yards per punt against Detroit and pinned the Lions inside their own 20-yard line on three of his four kicks.

With the loss, Minnesota is now 6-5 on the year and sitting at second place in the NFC North. They get a full week off before they have to face a talented Dallas Cowboys team in a game next Thursday night that could basically make or break their season.

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Adam Patrick

Adam has been rooting for the Vikings ever since he saw Randall Cunningham win NFC Special Teams Player of the week in 1997. Since his career sports highlights include 3rd place at 5th Grade Golf Camp and catching a ball during a soccer game (he was not playing goalie), Adam turned to writing. He considers himself a 'Vikings Realist' as he does not shy away from criticizing the purple and gold if necessary. He will not always write about the popular topics, but his goal is to provide readers with content they cannot find anywhere else. Follow him on Twitter @Str8_Cash_Homey

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  1. doubtful getting AD back this season will matter much. seems like if our defense or STs doesn’t win the game for us, we’re gonna lose. anyways, happy thanksgiving

  2. The play-calling was not very good. They were playing not to lose instead of being aggressive and going for jugular. Bradford seems like he is scared to throw beyond 5 yards. Clemens is a liability and wouldn’t make most teams let alone start. CB Waynes made 1 play but was picked on a lot. He can’t defend slants or crossing routes worth a damn. Obviously the O-line is yet again atrocious and needs to be addressed in the draft. I hate to say it but my Vikings aren’t going any where this year! They are still my team so haters shut up SKOL

  3. It’s part play calling, part O-line, part Bradford. Missing Diggs didn’t help. Lions were playing cover 2 for the most part…there are plenty of options to beat that, and it doesn’t have to be 3 yard passes. I’ve seen it plenty when Frazier was our coach.
    Of course it helps to run the ball…hard to do with our O-line.
    Why would you not take a shot in the end zone on 3rd and goal at the 15? Could someone please explain that…
    Then there’s Bradford. He’s just not efficient, what were we on 3rd down? How about 3rd and more than 4? He did not have a solid game, not a decent game, but a poor game. He is no better than Hill.

  4. “He can complete all those passes, and getting 3, 4 yards here, they might turn up and get 8 [yards] one time, but the ball is not going down the field. If you’re going to do that, I probably could [complete] 80 percent throwing it that fast.”
    That’s a quote from Glover Quinn. The Lions safety.
    You have to score TD’s. Not going to do that with this kind of offense.

  5. The Cowboys game is not make or break. This game was make or break. And it broke. Better luck next year, folks.

  6. Yep I agree enai. we’re pretty much toast this year. I shudder to think of next Thursday and how bad the asskicking from the ‘Pokes will be.

  7. this is a .500 team now, like it or not. plenty of blame to go around. i’m going to pick on Trae Waynes. He cannot cover slants and crosses very well, only good at straight ahead routes where his front line speed is good. he might develop further but i think it is fair to say that he might be a mini-bust as S. floyd and CP have been as well and A. Barr is now a bit overrated IMO. I have to pin some of the blame on Zimmer for this as it was his pick. Zimmer is supposed to be a DB guru so he should be able to coach up 2,3,4th round talent into big time CB more times than not. Waynes was 1st round and in top 11 and we are not getting near that production. We are not getting a “zimmer db dividend” on this guy.

  8. The Minnesota Vikings are a very good football team. They’re just banged all the hell up. Not much hope for this year but in Zimmer I still trust. He’ll fix this team and he’ll probably fix it by next season.

  9. Hard to fix a team that literally needs 5 new offensive linemen. Hate to say it, but Jerry Jones and the Cowboys did it right. First build your line, then get the skill guys. We went all in on the Bradford trade without enough cards for a winning hand. The smiles in Philly are getting bigger every week. Tough to watch us try so hard to come up just short. These are good guys to root for and it is a shame what injuries have done to such a promising season.

  10. Sure the loss was disappointing, but c’mon. If they take deep shots and Bradford gets creamed everyone ridicules the play calling. If we go for a quick passing game to avoid Bradford ending on IR they get ridiculed for not taking deep shots. Given they lost more linemen on Thursday night it’s hardly surprising they didn’t take more deep shots.

    By the way, what on earth is going on with Floyd? Did he have microfracture surgery or something?