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Six (Positive) Takeaways from Vikings Loss to Panthers

The Minnesota Vikings streak of eight consecutive wins ended Sunday with a 24-31 loss to the Carolina Panthers. The Vikings were weighed down by uncharacteristic mistakes on offense and the defense allowed some rare big plays, but that didn’t stop some positive things from happening during the game in Charlotte. Here are six takeaways from the Vikings loss to Carolina.

1. Vikings quarterback Case Keenum hit 10 different receivers. He has now hit at least nine different pass catchers in three of the past four games.

2. Everson Griffen brought down Panthers quarterback Cam Newton for his 13th sack of the season, a new career-high for the 29 year-old Viking.

3. The Vikings offense gained 100 rushing yards despite injuries to the offensive line. Jerick McKinnon rushed for 46 yards on seven carries, Latavius Murray ran for 14 yards on nine carries, and Keenum had 40 yards on five carries. It’s the tenth time this season the Vikings have rushed for at least 100 yards in a game. Carolina’s run defense ranked fourth in the NFL heading into Sunday’s matchup.

4. Vikings defensive tackle Linval Jospeh was all over the field. He was in on ten combined tackles which led the team. He also recorded a sack which gives him 3.5 on the season. Joseph is now one sack away from reaching a career-high. It was the third time in his career that Joseph had double-digit tackles in a game, according to

5. Adam Thielen hauled in six passes for 105 yards with a touchdown. It was Thielen’s fourth 100-yard receiving game of the year. He now has 80 catches for 1,161 yards with four touchdowns on the season.

6. The Vikings record is still 10-3. After losing a game for the first time in ten weeks, Minnesota currently holds the number two seed in the NFC playoffs standings. The Vikings play the Cincinnati Bengals, Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears to close out the season. With that schedule, the Vikings have a solid chance to regain the number one seed and home field advantage throughout the playoffs.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz suffered what is believed to be a torn ACL Sunday. The Eagles won yesterday and improved to 11-2, but Wentz’s injury has changed the dynamic of the NFC playoff picture and 5 out of 8 ESPN NFL Insiders like the Vikings chances.

To play us out, here’s a little “gem” from Andy Carlson’s Twitter feed. The replay shows, from an interesting angle, how Newton was able to break free for that 62-yard game-sealing gallop in the fourth quarter yesterday.

Happy Monday everyone!

Game stats courtesy of

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Sean Borman

Sean Borman is a writer with Minnesota roots that's still somehow an optimist. He was an intern with the Vikings during college and is an IT nerd by day. You can find Sean on the golf course and on Twitter @SeanBormanNFL.

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James Edelman
2 years ago

Good job Sean Borman. A deservedly positive article ! The Vikings will continue to climb.

Daryoush Ash
Daryoush Ash
2 years ago

Vikings will regain the first place in NFC. They almost won even as bad as they play.