The Minnesota Vikings started the second quarter with the football and a 7-0 lead over the Detroit Lions, and the football at their own 32-yard line. A pass to Greg Jennings and a personal foul penalty on Detroit safety Louis Delmas moved the Vikings into Detroit territory. A second pass to Jennings got the ball into the red zone, and Matt Cassel found Rhett Ellison to get the ball down to the Detroit 2-yard line for a first-and-goal. Cassel attempted to hit Jared Allen. . .yes, Jared Allen. . .in the back of the end zone in a goal line set, but overthrew him in the back of the end zone. An incomplete pass on second down gave the Vikings third-and-goal, and on third down Cassel threw a strike to Louis Delmas.
Unfortunately, Delmas plays for the Detroit Lions.
Delmas brought the interception back out to the 36-yard line, and the Lions took over from there. Fortunately, the Lions couldn't do anything with it and went three-and-out once again. Sam Martin got a very nice punt away, and the Vikings started their next possession at their own 5-yard line. Minnesota again put together a strong drive behind some nice running from Matt Asiata (who gained more yards on 8 carries in this game than he did on 30 carries against the Eagles in Week 15), and some nice passes from Cassel. However, the drive stalled out at the Detroit 39, and the Vikings inexplicably punted. . .come on, it's the last game of the year. . .and pinned the Lions at their own 7-yard line.
The Lions made a little bit of headway on the ensuing drive, but punted away. It appeared that the Vikings were going to be pinned at their own 5-yard line, but an illegal touching penalty by Michael Spurlock turned that into a touchback. The Vikings started a drive, but a sack of Cassel by Nick Fairley stopped it, and the Vikings punted the ball back with under a minute remaining. Erin Henderson sacked Matthew Stafford, and the teams went into the locker room with the Vikings leading 7-0.
It's been a fairly ugly game offensively, save for the long touchdown run by Patterson in the first quarter. Matt Cassel has completed 15-of-24 passes for 142 yards and an interception. Matt Asiata is on pace for 100 yards, having gained 57 yards on nine carries in this one. Patterson has the 50-yard touchdown run to account for all of the scoring. As far as receiving, Chase Ford leads the Vikings with five receptions, and he's gained 43 yards. (He's also the only currently healthy tight end with Rhett Ellision having left with an ankle injury.) Greg Jennings and Jerome Simpson have three grabs each, Jarius Wright has a couple for 31 yards, and Asiata and Wright each have a catch as well.
The Detroit offense has done next to nothing thus far. Matthew Stafford has completed 8-of-12 passes for just 43 yards. His eight completions are equally divided between Nate Burleson, Joique Bell, Joseph Fauria, and Reggie Bush. As far as rushing, Bush has six carried for 15 yards, with Bell having four for 12. The Lions have not had an offensive play longer than eight yards through one half of football.
At halftime, the Vikings have 241 yards of offense, while the Lions have 56. The Vikings also have 14 first downs to Detroit's three.
Hopefully Detroit can score at least once in this one. . .Cordarrelle Patterson needs another opportunity to return a kickoff, as he still stands four yards short of setting the new single-season kick return record for the Minnesota Vikings. But we'll see what the second half of play holds.
We're at halftime in the final game of the Metrodome, ladies and gentlemen, and the Vikings lead the Lions by a score of 7-0. Can the Vikings hold on for the victory? Come watch the second half with us and find out!