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Vikings top Panthers 28-27 in Wild Game/Finish

Cousins gets his statement win... Again

Vikings Panthers Recap

In the Bill Murray classic ‘Groundhog’s Day’, Murray’s character gets stuck in some sort of never explained existential time-loop. It’s only when he abandons his mercurial ways that he finds the true meaning of life, and breaks the loop in the process. That is, after he essentially learns everything needed to know about his female co-worker in order to manipulate her into his bed. Ah, the early 90’s.

The Vikings, despite being plagued by the same mistakes that have plagued them all season on both special teams and in terms of another incredibly impactful turnover deficit, had a chance to break their loop against the Carolina Panthers, down by six with just under two minutes to go at “home” in Minneapolis.

At the beginning of that drive the Fox color commentator mentioned that the Vikings would be winning (big) if not for the above-referenced mistakes. Those mistakes included BACK-to-BACK plays in which Panthers safety Jeremy Chinn scored a defensive TD.

Cousins came into that final drive having completed eight passes, then completed three passes in a row to get the Vikings to within striking distance with 50-seconds from the Panthers 10.

Unlike last week against the Dallas Cowboys, in which the Vikings had a chance to tie or win on a final drive, Cousins and the Vikings receivers came through to tie the game. After a “blocked” extra-point (which would’ve sent the game to overtime), Bailey kicked the go ahead extra point to give the Vikings the win and Cousins the drive that people say he never has put together (despite the Wild-Card game against the Saints last season).

This win was huge for the Vikings, who would’ve most likely fallen out of any realistic playoff position with back-to-back losses against sub-.500 teams. With the Arizona Cardinals losing to the New England Patriots, the Vikings are now only a game out of the playoff race for the seventh-spot.

But despite how good this game felt, there was a lot to worry about moving forward. Case in point the final Panthers drive. One that started with a 50-yard completion to Curtis Samuel. How that pass gets completed, when you’re playing deep, deep, DEEP coverage, is beyond me.

When you put that up against the turnovers and special team gaffes, the Vikings seem to still be consistently making the same mistakes that have plagued them all season. Because of those mistakes, the margin of error for the Vikings (should they want to make the playoffs) is razor thin.

So, they’ll need to clean up these mistakes ASAP. The Vikings most likely are going to need to go 4-1 the rest of the way to land the 7th-playoff spot while playing against divisional opponents and NFC playoff teams Tampa Bay and New Orleans.

For now, though, let’s bask in the good feelings that stem from winning this game in general but especially the way that they won. I’m sure the “fans” who never wanted Kirk Cousins here in the first place will find a way to explain away his performance today, but I think that it was a clear repudiation of the “Never Cousins-ers” and their strange loathing of the best quarterback this team has had (that isn’t a year from retiring/his 40’s) since Daunte Culpepper in 2004.

The Vikings face the 1-10 Jacksonville Jaguars at “home” next Sunday.

Highlights:

Game winning missed field goal

Adam Thielen reacting to the Vikings win

Cousins to Chad Beebe for the game winner

Justin Jefferson’s second touchdown

Cousins to Jets for a big third down conversion

Rookie DE DJ Wonnum blocks a Panthers FG

Cousins fumble / Chinn TD #1

Some Dan Bailey love

Jonathan Vilna trying to pronounce Ifeadi Odenigbo

Eric Kendricks may be the most underrated defender/player in the NFL

Cousins scrambling

Jefferson and the return of… GRIDDY!

Stats:

Vikings Offense

Vikings Defense

Carolina Panthers Offense 

Carolina Defense

Stay Tuned:

We are launching our first, bonafide RADIO SHOW this week on KDLM Sports Radio in Detroit Lakes/Fargo! For fans of our flagship podcast, ‘Morning Joes’, you’ll really enjoy the show we’re bringing as it’ll have Joe Oberle and me along with Vikings legend Mike Tice, Mike “Wobby” Wobschall, and a bunch of great guests!

Our first show goes live Wednesday @ 7pm and can be heard on KDLMradio.com or our social media and websites!

 

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Joe Johnson

Joe Johnson started purplePTSD.com back in 2015 & purpleTERRITORYradio.com in 2019, and purchased VikingsTerritory.com before the 2017-18 season , used to write for VikingsJournal.com and is the host of the ’Morning Joes’ & ‘About the Labor’ Podcasts, as well. Follow on Twitter: @vtPTSD

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