With the Minnesota Vikings ready to get back onto the football field after the long, dark tea time of the bye week, it’s time for us to take a look back at this week’s opponent. This week, the Vikings will start a stretch of four road contests in five weeks, as they head to the nation’s capital to take on the Washington Redskins.
This post will focus on the regular season meetings between these two franchises, though the Redskins have been a frequent post-season opponent of the Vikings. Over the years, the teams have met five times in the playoffs. . .the only teams that the Vikings have seen more frequently in the post-season are the Cowboys and the Rams, who they’ve played seven times each.
As always, the facts and figures in this post are brought to you by the good folks at Pro Football Reference.
Games between the Vikings and the Redskins: 20
All-time record: Tied, 10-10
Total Vikings’ points scored, head-to-head: 500 (25 points/game)
Total Redskins’ points scored, head-to-head: 451 (22.6 points/game)
Longest Vikings’ winning streak vs Redskins: 2, four times (most recently from 7 November 2013 to 2 November 2014)
Longest Redskins’ winning streak vs Vikings: 4 (29 November 1984 - 25 October 1992)
Most recent Vikings’ road win in series: 24 December 2011 (final score 33-26)
Most recent Redskins’ home win in series: 13 November 2016 (final score 26-20)
Biggest Vikings’ road win in series: 25 points, 2 November 1980 (final score 39-14)
Biggest Redskins’ home win in series: 12 points, 14 October 2012 (final score 38-26)
Current streak: Redskins, 1 win
You can see that the Vikings have never had any real sustained winning streaks against the Redskins. Even if you count post-season games, Minnesota has never beaten Washington more than twice in a row. The Redskins’ four-game winning streak mentioned above would actually be seven if we were counting the playoffs, as all three of the Redskins’ playoff wins over the Vikings came during that stretch.
Minnesota traveled to Washington last season, and it went. . .well, it went badly. Washington got out to an early 14-0 lead, but the Vikings came storming back in the second quarter with 20 unanswered points (on three touchdowns, thanks to a missed extra point from Blair Walsh). Unfortunately, the Vikings would not score again for the rest of the game, and though they held Washington out of the end zone, the home team got four field goals from Dustin Hopkins and stopped the Vikings’ attempt at a game-winning drive to get a 26-20 victory.
The Vikings had won the previous two meetings between these two teams, including the only matchup between the teams at TCF Bank Stadium. The two teams exchanged the lead several times in the second half, with the Redskins taking a 20-14 lead into the fourth quarter of play. However, the Vikings mounted a comeback, with Matt Asiata scoring two of his three touchdowns in the fourth quarter of play and the Vikings shut down the Redskins’ offense when they had to in order to preserve a 29-26 victory.
To find the last time the Vikings won in Washington, we need to go back to the disastrous 2011 season. Of course, the only thing that most people remember about this contest is that this was the game where Adrian Peterson tore his ACL. The two teams, again, went back and forth in this one, but the 2-12 Vikings went on without their best player and salvaged a victory, thanks to a big performance by Toby Gerhart and three second-half touchdowns from Joe Webb to give the Vikings a 33-26 victory.
That’s a short look back at the history between the Minnesota Vikings and the Washington Redskins, ladies and gentlemen. One team is going to take the lead in the all-time regular season series between these two clubs on Sunday. Hopefully it will be the one wearing purple.