For a brief, fleeting moment, it looked like the Minnesota Vikings may have turned things around on both sides of the football.
Man, we should have known better.
The Vikings were held scoreless in the second half, and the Washington Redskins did just enough to send them to their fourth consecutive loss by a score of 26-20 in Week 10 NFL action at FedEx Field.
Washington got on the board first, as their first drive of the afternoon ended with a 4-yard touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to Jamison Crowder. That was all the scoring for the first quarter of play, but the Redskins quickly added to their lead in the second quarter on a 38-yard touchdown pass from Cousins to the venerable Vernon Davis. That gave them a 14-0 lead early in the second quarter of play.
Minnesota answered back in the second quarter with a 1-yard touchdown run by Matt Asiata to cut the deficit to 14-7, the key play being a nice 36-yard connection from Sam Bradford to Stefon Diggs to put the Vikings into Washington territory. Minnesota then tied the score late in the quarter on Bradford's first touchdown pass, this one a 20-yarder to Kyle Rudolph. Rudolph's touchdown was reviewed to see if he stepped out of bounds, but on replay it was upheld.
On Washington's next offensive play, Linval Joseph forced a fumble by Rob Kelley that was recovered by Everson Griffen, giving the Vikings the ball at the Washington 32 with 50 seconds left. Minnesota took advantage with Bradford's second scoring pass of the half, as he found Adam Thielen for a 3-yard score on the final play of the second quarter. Walsh missed that extra point, unfortunately, so they went into the locker room with a 6-point lead at 20-14.
Washington kicker Dustin Hopkins connected on a pair of field goals in the second quarter, one from 30 and one from 37, to tie the game at 20 going into the fourth quarter. He added another field goal midway through the fourth quarter, this one a 50-yard blast, to put the Redskins back out in front by a score of 23-20. Minnesota pushed into Washington territory on the ensuing drive, but Sam Bradford threw just his second interception of the season, this one by Redskins' linebacker Preston Smith. The Redskins settled for a field goal on the ensuing drive, thanks to a sack by Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter. Hopkins connected from 28 to make the score 26-20, Washington, with just 2:31 left in the game.
Minnesota pushed into Washington territory at the end of the game, but Bradford took a sack in a horrible spot, and a holding penalty on Jake Long (on a play where he got hurt) pushed the Vikings back to the Washington 28 with just one second left on the clock. Bradford was sacked again, and the game ended with the Vikings' fourth consecutive loss.
Statistically, Bradford had a very good game, as he completed 31-of-39 passes for 307 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. It was the one killer INT, however, that pretty much sealed it for Minnesota's loss, unfortunately. Stefon Diggs had another huge game catching the ball, catching 13 passes for the second straight game, this time for 164 yards. Kyle Rudolph chipped in with 69 yards on five catches. Once again, the Vikings could do nothing in the run game, as Jerick McKinnon "led" the way with 16 yards on six carries.
For the Redskins, Kirk Cousins completed 22-of-33 passes for 262 yards, two touchdowns, and no interceptions. Pierre Garcon led the Washington receivers with 81 yards on six catches, with Vernon Davis and Jamison Crowder contributing touchdown catches. Rob Kelley led the Redskins in rushing, carrying the ball 22 times for 97 yards.
The Vikings, with their fourth straight loss, fall to 5-4 and will host the Arizona Cardinals next weekend at U.S. Bank Stadium. The Redskins move to 5-3-1 on the season and will host the Packers next week at FedEx Field.
Minnesota drops their fourth consecutive game, this one by a final score of 26-20 to the Washington Redskins. Thank you to everyone that got their coverage of this week's game right here at The Daily Norseman.