The Cardinals Did Something in Week 2 That No Team Had Done since the Vikings

Video Game Could Be Kyler’s Greatest Test vs. Vikings
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The Arizona Cardinals stunningly conducted a late-game comeback versus the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday, erasing a 20-0 deficit in the second half.

And the way they won was eerily similar to the 2014 Minnesota Vikings.

On October 26th, 2014, the Vikings outlasted the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in overtime, thanks to a fumble recovery touchdown by then-rookie Anthony Barr. For 2,884 days, no NFL team had won a game in overtime via fumble recovery score.

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Indeed, fourth-year cornerback Byron Murphy grabbed a Hunter Renfrow fumble, scampering 59 yards for a walk-off touchdown with about four minutes left in overtime. The Cardinals won 29-23.

In 2014, Barr stripped the football from Austin Seferian-Jenkins on the first play of overtime and sprinted 27 yards to end the day for Tampa Bay by a score of 19-13. That play now feels like a million years ago, as Teddy Bridgewater was a rookie quarterback for the Vikings and Mike Glennon, not Brady, was in charge of the Buccaneers.

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For about 90 minutes of real-life time, the Cardinals season seemed kaput, barrelling toward an 0-2 record after getting shellacked by the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 1. But thanks to a marvelous second half from quarterback Kyler Murray, who tallied 277 passing yards and two combined touchdowns in the game, Arizona’s season didn’t tumble into irrelevance in September.

On the other hand, the Raiders, who had high hopes for another playoff push in 2022, were relegated to the AFC’s basement, situated at 0-2 after Week 2. Since the NFL expanded to at least six playoff teams per conference in 1990, just 11% of teams end up reaching the postseason following an 0-2 start. Moreover, the Raiders live in a division with brutal AFC West opponents, led by quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes, Russell Willson, and Justin Herbert — a murderer’s row of signal-callers.

The Vikings didn’t turn Barr’s heroism into a playoff appearance in 2014, but the play and others like it set the tone for Minnesota to win the division the next season, 2015.

Former Vikings linebacker Nick Vigil notched five tackles in the winning effort for the Cardinals.

The Vikings play the Cardinals at U.S. Bank Stadium in six weeks.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

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