The Minnesota Vikings were outgunned at home this Sunday, losing to the Packers 33-27. Green Bay improves to an astounding 7-0, and the Vikings fall to a frustrating 1-6 on the year.
This game was not all negative for the Vikings. Granted a loss is a loss, but there was much positive to be taken from QB Christian Ponder’s debut. For one thing, Minnesota did manage to rack up 425 yards of total offense, easily their best showing of the year in that department. RB Adrian Peterson managed a very stout 175 yards on the ground, and Ponder was able to toss 2 TD scores (though he did throw 2 INTs as well).
In the end, it was the Vikings’ depleted secondary that paved the way for another Superman-esque showing by Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, who was 24 of 30 for 335 yards and 3 scores. Rodgers led a 20-0 third quarter showing by the Packers who regained the lead after trailing at half time and put the game mostly out of reach. After 2 Mason Crosby field goals, including a 58-yarder, the Packers were leading 33-17, but Ponder and the Vikings weren’t ready to quit just yet.
Minnesota responded with a Ryan Longwell field goal early in the 4th quarter, then scored again when Ponder found WR Michael Jenkins for a 24-yard score. That closed the deficit to 33-27, but that’s where it ended, and the Vikings’ rally came up just a little short in the end.
The Vikings made it clear that they aren’t giving up us a team. They may be dismal in terms of their record, and I’ll be the first one to tout the importance of records over intangibles, but the reality is this: Christian Ponder looking like a reasonable starter is a positive in and of itself. The fact that he helped to mount a 4th quarter comeback is a bonus at this point. Yes, they fell short and yes there are still holes to fill on this team, but I think that we still got some positives out of the Vikings despite the loss. They looked a good team in the eye and did not flinch, which says a lot about this team and its coaches.
Minnesota heads to Carolina to face Cam Newton and the Panthers next Sunday, stay tuned for news and updates as that game draws near.
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