Vikings 23, Packers 10: Rodgers Injured, Vikings Move Into Tie Atop NFC North
Packers at Vikings Week 6 Recap
The Minnesota Vikings beat the Green Bay Packers in Minneapolis Sunday by a score of 23 to 10. The biggest news stemming from the game: Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers left in the first quarter due to a broken collarbone. He could miss the rest of the season.
Green Bay was not the same after losing their star quarterback. Packers backup Brett Hundley replaced Rodgers in the second quarter and struggled. The 2015 5th-round pick went 18 of 33 for 157 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions. He also fumbled once and was sacked four times for a total of 20 yards. His QB rating was 39.6.
Green Bay’s rushing attack also sputtered as it squared up against Minnesota’s 6th-ranked run defense. Running backs Ty Montgomery and Aaron Jones combined for 69 yards on 23 carries (3.0 YPC) as the Packers failed to get any momentum going on offense.
Jerick McKinnon Finds End Zone Twice
The Vikings, on the other hand, had success moving the ball on the ground and through the air. Running backs Jerick McKinnon (16 carries) and Latavius Murray (15 carries) combined for 97 yards on 31 carries including a McKinnon touchdown. Quarterback Case Keenum added 15 yards on two rushes.
Despite being without Diggs, the team’s leading receiver, the Vikings still had success through the air. Wide receiver Adam Thielen had 9 catches for 97 yards, tight end Kyle Rudolph had 5 catches for 47 yards, and running back McKinnon added 5 catches for 30 yards and a touchdown.
Case Keenum Wins Again
Although all eyes were focused on the opposing quarterback, Keenum had a solid start for the Vikings. Sam Bradford‘s replacement went 24 of 38 for 239 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He ended the day with a QB rating of 78.7.
Keenum showed resilience after throwing an interception in the second quarter. It was the first interception thrown by a Viking signal caller all season. Keenum’s strong play should draw more attention from opposing defenses, as he has played a large role in the Vikings’ last two victories.
Harry Has a Day, Vikings Defense Dominates
Vikings safety Harrison Smith continued his stellar season with a fine game Sunday. Smith had two pass deflections, a tackle for a loss, two QB hits, 1.5 sacks and a one-handed interception to go along with five tackles.
Cornerbacks Trae Waynes and Xavier Rhodes each added an interception of their own as the Vikings secondary picked off the inexperienced Hundley three times.
Minnesota’s defense held the Packers to a season-low 227 yards, including 72 rushing yards and 175 passing yards. The unit contained the Packers’ star players all game, holding receivers Jordy Nelson to 6 catches for 60 yards and Devante Adams to 5 catches for 54 yards and touchdown.
According to Vikings.com, the Vikings came into Sunday’s game with the NFL’s best 3rd down defense, allowing only 14 conversions in 55 attempts (25.5%). Those numbers only got better on Sunday, as Rodgers and Hundley combined to lead Green Bay’s offense to a four-of-17 (24%) effort.
Linebacker Anthony Barr, who delivered the season-altering hit to Rodgers, had a strong first half before he left the game under concussion protocol at halftime.
Treadwell Starting to Catch On
2016 first-round pick Laquon Treadwell finally received some consistent targets Sunday. The wideout caught 3 passes for 51 yards, including this impressive one-handed snag:
How 'bout that catch radius?@SuccessfulQuon 👀 pic.twitter.com/k2PG8Gymq3
— Minnesota Vikings (@Vikings) October 15, 2017
After Minnesota’s Week 6 victory, the Vikings and Packers are now tied for first in the NFC North.
More Game Notes
- Veteran cornerback Terence Newman made his 200th career start today.
- WR Michael Floyd hurt his calf during the game, but Mike Zimmer said that aside from Dalvin Cook, no current injuries suffered by Vikings are considered season-ending, per the Star Tribune’s Andrew Krammer.
- Jeremiah Sirles filled in admirably at left guard for Nick Easton, who missed the game due to injury.
- The Vikings’ revamped offensive line continues to impress. They did not allow a sack today.
- Kicker Kai Forbath had a solid day, making all of his kicks. He went 3 for 3 in field goal attempts, including a 53-yarder, and 2 for 2 in extra points.
- The Vikings take on the Baltimore Ravens next Sunday at noon at U.S. Bank Stadium.