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Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions: Fourth Quarter Open Thread

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Minnesota holds a lead, but Detroit keeps fighting back.

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

After establishing a 20-10 halftime lead over the Detroit Lions, the Minnesota Vikings got the football first in the second half. The kickoff from Sam Martin went into the end zone for a touchback, and the Vikings started at their own 25-yard line. The Vikings got the run game going on the drive, as the first play of the possession saw Latavius Murray blast over the left side for a huge 46-yard gain. Jerick McKinnon then followed that up with carries of 16 and 11 yards, and the Vikings had first-and-goal at the 2. Murray finished it from there, as he went in from two yards out for another Minnesota touchdown. Forbath added the extra point, and the Vikings were back up again by 17 at 27-10 early in the third quarter.

Forbath’s kickoff went into the end zone for a touchback, giving Matthew Stafford and company the ball at their own 25. The drive started with a flip to Golden Tate that picked up 11 yards and gave the Lions a quick first down. Stafford then found Ameer Abdullah for 11 more yards, and the Lions were near midfield. Stafford then found Marvin Jones for a 16-yard gain to the Minnesota 34-yard line on third down, Detroit’s first third down conversion of the day. Stafford then found Eric Ebron for another first down to the Vikings’ 14.

The Lions had what was originally ruled a 14-yard touchdown by Darren Fells on a third-and-10 play, but replay (correctly) overturned the call and took the points off of the board. That meant that the Lions had to settle for a 32-yard field goal from Matt Prater, and the lead was back down to 14 at 27-13.

Martin’s kickoff again went for a touchback, meaning the Vikings’ offense took over at the 25 once again. The Vikings got a quick first down on a pass from Case Keenum to Adam Thielen and a run by Latavius Murray. Keenum then tried to go deep for Stefon Diggs, and it looked like he was interfered with, but the official kept the flag in his pocket. Keenum was then sacked for the first time since Week 8 when he was taken down by Akeem Spence and Anthony Zettel, and Ryan Quigley had to punt it away. A penalty on the punt return gave the Lions the ball on their own 28-yard line.

Stafford went to work immediately, finding Kenny Golladay for a 20-yard gain to put the Lions near midfield. Minnesota forced another third down situation, but Stafford then found Eric Ebron for a conversion to the Minnesota 40. After a defensive holding penalty on the Vikings, Theo Riddick took the ball to the Minnesota 27 on a run that was challenged by Mike Zimmer as a potential fumble, but the call was upheld and the ball stayed with Detroit. Everson Griffen sacked Stafford on third down and forced a fumble that the Lions recovered. Detroit had to settle for another Matt Prater field goal, this one a 50-yarder to make the score 27-16.

Sam Martin’s kickoff went for another touchback, giving the Vikings the ball at their own 25 once again. Latavius Murray lost four on first down, and an incomplete pass brought up third down. Keenum was then sacked for the second time in the game, this time by Ezekiel Ansah, and then Keenum was called for taunting to end a disastrous series for the Minnesota offense. As we move to the fourth quarter, the Vikings will be punting the football away, looking at a 4th-and-27 from their own 8-yard line.

The Vikings lead going into the fourth quarter at Ford Field by a score of 27-16. Can they hold on for their seventh straight win and a stranglehold on the NFC North?