In a game where the Minnesota Vikings were supposed to get crushed fairly easily, they hung tough. . .but it wasn't quite enough to get by one of the NFL's hottest teams.
The Vikings fell to the Green Bay Packers at TCF Bank Stadium on Sunday afternoon by a score of 24-21 in a game that was a whole lot closer than any of the experts. . .and, quite frankly, many of the fans. . .were expecting it to be.
The Packers drew first blood late in the first quarter on a 1-yard touchdown run by Eddie Lacy. The Vikings then answered back on the ensuing drive, with Teddy Bridgewater finding Charles Johnson for his first career touchdown catch early in the second quarter, tying the score at seven.
After forcing the Packers to punt, Bridgewater made his one big mistake of the game on the next drive, as he threw a pass intended for Greg Jennings that was intercepted by Micah Hyde. The Packers immediately turned it into points, with Aaron Rodgers finding tight end Richard Rodgers for a 1-yard score to make it 14-7. The Vikings added a 39-yard Blair Walsh field goal before halftime to go into the locker room trailing 14-10.
Walsh cut the deficit to 14-13 with a 51-yard field goal in the third quarter, but Mason Crosby answered back to make it 17-13 in favor of Green Bay. The Packers then extended their lead further on a shovel pass from Rodgers to Lacy from ten yards out to make the score 24-13.
The Vikings made it close at the end, as Bridgewater led the team down the field and found Jennings for a 5-yard touchdown. The Vikings also converted the two-point conversion on a pass from Bridgewater to Charles Johnson, and cut the deficit to 24-21. That was as close as they would get, though, as Lacy ran out the clock for the Packers and they held on for the victory.
Bridgewater had an up-and-down game, completing 21-of-37 passes for 210 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. It marks the first multi-touchdown game of his NFL career, but he really struggled with his accuracy early in the game. Jerick McKinnon led the team in rushing with 15 carries for 54 yards, with Joe Banyard chipping in with five carries and 26 yards. Bridgewater also scrambled five times for 32 yards. Johnson led the Vikings in receiving with three grabs for 52 yards and a touchdown, and Kyle Rudolph added three catches for 50 yards in his first productive game since his return from injury. Jennings had four receptions to lead the Vikings in that category, and those catches accounted for 38 yards and a score.
The Vikings fall to 4-7 on the season, and will host the Carolina Panthers at TCF Bank Stadium next week in the second game of a three-game homestand.
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