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Minnesota Vikings at Dallas Cowboys: Second quarter recap and third quarter discussion

The Vikings still lead, but the second quarter wasn’t as much fun as the first

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Dallas Cowboys Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

We’re at halftime of Sunday Night Football, and while the Vikings still have the lead, it has been cut to three points at 17-14.

The Cowboys got into Minnesota territory on their possession that carried over from the first quarter, but eventually had to punt it away with the Vikings taking over at their own 5-yard line. The Vikings couldn’t do much, and Britton Colquitt punted for the first time on the evening. The punt was a bad one, giving the Cowboys the ball in Minnesota territory to start the drive.

Dallas took advantage of the good field position, converting a big third down from Dak Prescott to Amari Cooper and following it up with a 23-yard touchdown pass from Prescott to Michael Gallup. Brett Maher connected on the extra point, and just like that the Vikings’ lead was cut in half, 14-7.

The Vikings proceeded to go three-and-out on the next drive, including a third-down play that was ruled a fumble by Kirk Cousins that was returned for a touchdown, but a review corrected the call to an incomplete pass. The Cowboys had a longer field to deal with, but it didn’t matter, as Prescott got his second scoring pass of the quarter, this time finding old Vikings’ nemesis Randall Cobb on a 22-yard score. Maher added the extra point, and just like that things were tied at 14-14.

The Vikings took over after a touchback, and had 1:54 and two timeouts to make something happen. They got the ball to near midfield, and on a 3rd-and-3 from the Minnesota 47, Cousins looked deep for Stefon Diggs, who made an incredible catch that was originally called incomplete. Minnesota managed to turn the drive into a field goal, a 26-yarder for Dan Bailey to give the good guys the lead going into the locker room, 17-14

That resulted in a 26-yard field goal for Dan Bailey just before the halftime gun, giving the Vikings a 17-14 lead going into the locker room. The Vikings will get the ball to start the second half, having deferred after winning the opening coin toss.

Kirk Cousins has had a pretty solid night thus far, completing 16-of-21 passes for 170 yards and the two one-yard touchdown passes to Rudolph. Dalvin Cook has been the biggest part of the passing game so far, as he’s already up to 79 yards receiving on five catches. Diggs has 38 yards on a pair of grabs, and Irv Smith Jr. has five receptions for 34 yards. Laquon Treadwell has a 10-yard reception, and Rudolph has a total of three catches for nine yards and two scores.

Cook hasn’t gotten a lot going on the ground so far, as he’s gotten 27 yards on nine carries. Alexander Mattison has 16 yards on three carries in a relief role.

The Vikings’ defense has been uncharacteristically awful on third down tonight. Dallas has gone 7-of-10 on third down so far, and that’s something that’s going to need to change in the second half.

We’re at halftime of Sunday Night Football, and the Minnesota Vikings lead the Dallas Cowboys by a score of 17-14. Come join us for the third quarter of play!