The 20 Most Weird and Wild Moments of Vikings 2022 Season

The Minnesota Vikings capped a weird and wild season a few weeks ago, winning 13 games and the NFC North for the first time since 2017.

The ride was beset by peaks, valleys, and oddities, so let’s re-live 20. The weirdness is ranked in ascending order, so the weirdest item is at the bottom of the article.

The 20 Most Weird and Wild Moments of Vikings 2022 Season

20. Sasquatch Sits Next to Dalvin Cook at Wolves Game

The 20 Most Weird
Sasquatch and Dalvin Cook at a Minnesota Timberwolves game in October of 2022 at Target Center.

A “where were you when” moment to be sure, Sasquatch had a seat next to Vikings running back Dalvin Cook in October at a Minnesota Timberwolves game.

19. Oli Udoh Arrested — for Nothing

Vikings OL Will Be Fine
Aug 27, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive tackle Oli Udoh (74) stretches before the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports.

Udoh was arrested in Miami in October — for a nothingburger. He allegedly followed a woman into a nightclub restroom. The state later determined “it would not be able to prove that the defendant committed the crimes charged.”

18. 3rd and 10 at GB — Only 10 Defenders on the Field

Vikings "What If" Rankings Are Remarkable
Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Jarran Reed (90) rushes Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) as he passes the ball on Sunday, January 1, 2023, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. Tork Mason/USA TODAY NETWORK.

While the game ended up a rout, the Vikings were very much alive on a 3rd and 10 play. And then they trotted 10 defenders on the field, the opposite of the infamous 2009 NFC Championship gaffe.

17. Duke Shelley Playing like Deion Sanders

CB Represents Fortune
Jan 8, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings cornerback Duke Shelley (20) celebrates a defensive pass breakup during the third quarter against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

We don’t know how or why, but Duke Shelley wound up the Vikings best CB in 2022. He finished 2022 as the NFL’s fourth-best corner, according to Pro Football Focus.

16. Irv Smith Drops “The Pass” at PHI

Irv Smith drops a Week 2 pass at the Philadelphia Eagles. Image Courtesy of Marcus Miller on Twitter.

In the end, the Vikings-Eagles game wasn’t very competitive, but at the point Smith dropped this sure-fire touchdown, the game was somewhat alive and well. But no cigar.

15. Lewis Cine, a 1st-Rounder, Not Starting

Lewis Cine Pitched a Shutout vs. Lions. And Not in a Good Way.
Aug 20, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings safety Lewis Cine (6) warms up before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

The Vikings conducted a controversial trade to land Cine in the 2022 NFL Draft, and then he didn’t start next to Harrison Smith. Cine later broke his leg and is slated to return — hopefully as a starter — in 2023.

14. Justin Jefferson Says “He’s Not Fond of Money.”

Justin Jefferson Is about
Jan 8, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) warms up wearing a shirt honoring Buffalo Bills Safety Damar Hamlin (3) before the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports.

In late July, Jefferson told reporters, “I’ll focus on contract after the season. Our main thing is reaching to that goal, but I’m not really too fond of money. I’m really just trying to get that goal of being the best receiver.”

The stuff of dreams.

13. Greg Joseph Hitting 61-Yarders — but Not Extra Points

a new viking hero
Dec 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings place kicker Greg Joseph (1) celebrates his game-winning field goal after the game against the New York Giants at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Somehow, Joseph missed six extra points in 2022 and then drilled five game-winning field goals. Vikings fans brag about having a money kicker — just one that struggles with extra points. Classic Vikings.

12. Vikings Make Meh QBs Look Godly

Nov 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) throws a pass as Minnesota Vikings linebacker Danielle Hunter (99) rushes in during the first quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

In a five-week period, the Vikings defense made Mac Jones, Mike White, Jared Goff, and Daniel Jones look better than Tom Brady. The blunders were all foreshadowing for the same Daniel Jones carving the Vikings in the playoffs, thus ending the 13-win season.

11. Popular Twitter Account Suggests Kevin O’Connell Should Resign

Did the Vikings Succeed
Sep 30, 2022; Thundridge, United Kingdom; Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell at press conference at Hanbury Manor. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

VikeFans, a Twitter account with over 12,000 followers, tweeted after the Vikings Week 17 loss to the Packers, “Once again, the Viking offense does not show up for half or more of the game. Only in Buffalo, did the MIN offense play a full 4 qtrs. That is on your OC, and Kevin needs to be a Head Coach, not an OC. Want to be OC? Resign as HC.”

The Vikings were 12-4 at the time of the tweet.

10. Vikings Go 13-4 with a -3 Point Differential

Explained: Fallout from Vikings Loss to DAL
Nov 20, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Dallas Cowboys defensive end Dorance Armstrong (right) reacts with defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

Because of losing a couple of games in blowout fashion, plus an 11-0 record in one-score games, the Vikings finished the regular season with the worst point differential (-3) by a 13-win team in NFL history.

9. Brad Childress Showed Up at Training Camp

Former Vikings head coach Brad Childress showed up at 2022 Vikings training camp and chatted with owner Zygi Wilf. Image Courtesy of ESPN’s Kevin Seifert.

Nobody understood it during or after, but indeed, Chilly showed up out of nowhere at Vikings training camp.

8. Ed Donatell Predicts Revamped Defense in Playoffs

Ed Donatell Speaks after Exit
Dec 17, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Ed Donatell looks on before the game against the Indianapolis Colts at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Before the Vikings playoff game against the Giants, Ed Donatell proclaimed about his defense, “I think you’ll like the way we play.”

We did not.

7. The Entire Buffalo Game

Nov 13, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Eric Kendricks (54) recovers a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during second half at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports.

No context or caption needed.

6. NFL Shares Video of Alexander Mattison’s TD Celebration — and Fines Him

Viking Fined for a Wee Bit of Twerking
Sep 19, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison (2) on the sidelines against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports.

Mattison scored against the Jets, fired up a tiny twerk, the NFL shared the video all over the place (presumably capitalizing on the exposure and impressions), and later fined Mattison $6,503.

That doesn’t make any sense.

5. Matt Daniels Heaps Praise on Jalen Reagor’s Body

Matt Daniels Is a Self-Confessed Flower Grower
Matt Daniels

After Reagor joined the Vikings via trade, special teams coordinator Matt Daniels said about Reagor’s physique, “He’s a very stout, cocky-built guy. He’s not really narrow. He’s got thick, strong legs, big glutes, really nice calves, you know. Again, I salivated over the guy.”

4. Kevin O’Connell Receives Absolute Zero Coach of the Year Consideration

Vikings Are the 8th-Worst Team in Football per 'Football Outsiders'
Kevin O’Connell

The rookie head coach won 13 games, and COTY voters shrugged shoulders and said, “Dah well.”

O’Connell was not a finalist for the award.

3. D.J. Reed Claims He Shut Down Justin Jefferson

Jets CB Tries to Clown Justin Jefferson. Didn't Work.
D.J. Reed

Reed had safety help on Justin Jefferson when his Jets lost to the Vikings. But Reed claimed he was “in his shit all game.”

Jefferson took notice:

2. Referees Nullify 2 Chandon Sullivan TDs — and Fine Him

The NFL Had the Gall to Fine Chandon Sullivan
Jul 28, 2022; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings cornerback Chandon Sullivan (39) during training camp at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Referees blew the whistle dead on two honest-to-goodness Sullivan touchdowns against the Colts — and then fined him for getting mad about it.

The Vikings won anyway.

1. NFL Analysts Claim Kirk Cousins “Didn’t Do Much” during IND Comeback

These Vikings Are Designed
Dec 17, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

“People are complaining about Kirk Cousins’ PFF grade in this game. Cousins didn’t do that much in this game,” one analyst said.

NFL Network‘s Gregg Rosenthal tweeted about Cousins’ performance, “It is very Kirk Cousins to not be playing that well during a 33-point comeback.”

Cousins threw for 417 passing yards and 4 touchdowns in the 2nd Half alone.

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 Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by