The Minnesota Vikings went to Reliant Stadium and beat the Houston Texans at their own game, bullying their way to a win and a victory against the Green Bay Packers away from an unlikely wildcard berth into the playoffs.
The Texans pretty much slept walked through the first half, going in to the locker room down by 10 points. In honesty it could/should have been more.
As a Chicago Bears’ fan it is hard to be objective, but the Vikings dominated the Texans in the first half of this ball game. Christian Ponder found a way to move the ball down the field into scoring positions and Adrian Peterson fought for every difficult yard he could.
When was the last time you can remember Arian Foster rushing for 12 yards and fumble in the first half of a football game? Matt Schaub looked intent on throwing a pick 6 and the Vikings for everything they did right couldn’t find that one play to almost decide this game by halftime.
This game for me was won by the Vikings defense midway through the third quarter. Ponder fumbled the ball turning it over at the Minnesota 45 yard line. With the number 3 ranked offense in scoring, the Texans couldn’t move the ball to get any points at all.
Couple this with the goal line stand on the next Texans drive and really answer to what happened in this game starts and ends with the frankly savage thirst to win from the Vikings defense.
The Vikings very much look like a team who wants playoff football, in honesty if this defense can perform like this against the Packers they have a very good chance of winning at home in week 17.
Ponder still had his moments of just head scratching stupidity but this really is something you will always expect to see from the guy.
In short the Vikings went into Houston, bruised and bullied their way to a convincing win that really makes you question how the Texans are one win away from home field advantage in the AFC.
Perhaps that is the biggest compliment a rival fan can give the Vikings for their efforts today, they made the ‘best’ the AFC had to offer look ordinary, they didn’t just beat the Texans, they embarrassed them.
All this means is heading into the final week of the 2012 NFL regular season, the 9-6 Vikings hold their own fate in their own hands. After today’s performance they fully deserve to.