To start the second quarter of play against the New York Giants, the Minnesota Vikings got their second quarterback sack of the night, with Brian Robison dragging down Eli Manning for a loss of six yards. A bad snap on third down led to a loss of 13 more, and the Giants had to bring Brad Wing in to punt following the three-and-out. Wing's punt was a short one, and the Vikings got to start their next possession in New York territory at the 44-yard line.
It looked like the Vikings might go three-and-out again, but Teddy Bridgewater found Jarius Wright for 18 yards on third down, putting the Vikings at the New York 24-yard line. It looked like Jerick McKinnon had picked up a touchdown run on the next play, but it was negated by a false start on Matt Kalil (that looked like it was called sort of late). However, two plays later, the Vikings found the end zone on a 28-yard strike from Bridgewater to Kyle Rudolph for a Minnesota touchdown! Blair Walsh added the extra point, and the Vikings extended their lead to 10-0.
Shane Vereen returned Walsh's kickoff to the New York 20-yard line to start the Giants' next drive. Eli Manning finally got his first completion of the evening, and the Giants got a first down after a run by Rashad Jennings. A penalty on Captain Munnerlyn gave the Giants another first down, and the Giants quickly went no-huddle, as Manning found Jennings on a screen play for a big 50-yard completion all the way down to the Minnesota 13-yard line. However, the Minnesota defense stood firm from that point, and the Giants had to bring on Josh Brown for a short field goal attempt. Brown was good from 27 yards out, and New York got on the board, cutting the Minnesota lead to 10-3.
The Giants kicked short on their next kickoff, with Danielle Hunter rambling to the Minnesota 37-yard line. A couple of passes to Mike Wallace. . .yeah, Mike Wallace. . .picked up a first down for the Vikings and put them near midfield. Unfortunately, the drive stalled out just inside Giants' territory at the 45, and Jeff Locke was called on for his fourth punt of the evening. Locke pinned the Giants inside the 20, as the Vikings downed it at the 11 for the Giants to start their next possession.
New York quickly found themselves facing a 3rd-and-1 at their own 21-yard line, and Eli Manning thought it would be a good time to welcome back Harrison Smith. Manning overthrew a receiver near the right sideline, and the ball went into the hands of Smith, who took it all the way back for a 35-yard touchdown! Unfortunately, Blair Walsh missed the extra point by bouncing it off the left upright, meaning the Minnesota lead was extended to 16-3.
The Giants couldn't do anything with their next drive, and Brad Wing got away another short punt, as the Vikings got to start out at their own 43-yard line with 1:06 remaining and all three time outs in their pockets. Bridgewater found Jerick McKinnon to get the Vikings to midfield, and then hit Jarius Wright again for a 21-yard hit down to the New York 29-yard line. The drive. . .say it along with me. . .stalled out again, and again the Vikings called on Blair Walsh. Walsh put the ball through the uprights from 52 yards out, and the Vikings extended their lead to 19-3 as they went into the locker room at halftime.
It hasn't exactly been a glorious night on the stat sheet for either team thus far. For the Vikings, Bridgewater has completed 12-of-21 passes for 127 yards and a touchdown. Adrian Peterson hasn't been much of a factor, as he's gained just 38 yards on 12 carries. Jarius Wright has made several big plays on the night for the Vikings, and he's the team's leading receiver with three receptions for 57 yards in the first half.
While the Vikings haven't put up big stats so far, they've certainly done better than the Giants. Eli Manning went the entire first quarter without a completion, and finished the first half having completed 5-of-13 passes for 77 yards, no touchdowns, and two interceptions. Rashad Jennings has had some success on the ground, gaining 50 yards on nine carries. Jennings also has fifty receiving yards (all on one play) to lead the Giants in that category as well.
We're at halftime of what might be the last Vikings' home game at TCF Bank Stadium, and the good guys lead this one 19-3 as they go into the locker room. Can the Vikings hold on and assure themselves of a post-season berth for the first time since 2012?