- Anthony Tornatore
Dalvin Cook 'Shakes and Bakes' the Vikings to a Second Straight Victory, Defeat Lions 34-20
The Minnesota Vikings recorded their second straight win as they went on to defeat the Detroit Lions, 34-20. The Vikings would go on to take the lead and never look back as they also recorded their second wire to wire victory this season. This was another game accredited to the outstanding performance of Dalvin Cook. Cook went off for 252 all-purpose scrimmage yards on 24 touches. He also found the promised land on two separate occasions. Cook has now solidified himself as a top five running back in the NFL and could easily be going on to win Offensive Player of the Year.
Besides from Cook, Kirk Cousins went on to have a very good football game. Cousins would go on to throw for 220 yards and found the end zone three times: once to Ameer Abdullah and twice to Irv Smith Jr. The Vikings defense, which has been hit with injury after injury, also 'balled out' this week, forcing three interceptions, two on back to back possessions, and two sacks on Matthew Stafford. It seemed that the Vikings found their groove immediately this past Sunday in another game that was must win.
The first series for the Vikings was an extremely quick and methodical five play, 67-yard drive, end in a Dalvin Cook rushing touchdown to put Minnesota up early. After a missed field goal by the Lions and Matt Prater, the Vikings would respond with another five-play drive that was capped off by second year tight end, Irv Smith Jr, from nine yards out. After one quarter of play, the Vikings would lead, 13-0.
With 8:41 left in the second quarter, the Lions would finally get on the board off of the leg of Matt Prater, who drilled a chip shot 23-yard field goal. Detroit would go on to force the Vikings to punt the ball, and after an eight play, 72-yard drive, went on to punch it in the end zone with Marvin Jones Jr to make it a three-point game. With just 1:19 left in the first half, Kirk Cousins drove down the field to find Ameer Abdullah for a 22-yard receiving touchdown to end the first half on a positive not for the Vikings. After one half of play, Minnesota led Detroit, 20-10.
Both teams would go on to exchange punts to begin the second half until the Vikings received the ball at their own 23-yard line. After a nine play, 77-yard drive that ultimately saw Irv Smith Jr find the end zone for the second time on the afternoon, Minnesota would start to pull away and take a commanding three score lead. On Detroit's next two possessions, the Vikings would on to intercept Matthew Stafford twice, once by Eric Wilson and once by Eric Kendricks. After three quarters of play, Minnesota held a commanding 27-10 lead.
After a Minnesota punt to begin the fourth quarter, the Lions would take control of the offensive and come away with three points off of the leg of Matt Prater once again, this time from 45 yards out. The next play, Dalvin Cook would burst off for a 70-yard rushing touchdown which was ultimately the icing on top of the cake. Detroit would answer that touchdown on a one play drive after a Minnesota blocked punt. This saw backup quarterback Chase Daniel, who replaced the injured Stafford, find T.J. Hockenson in the back of the end zone. The Vikings would hold on and defeated the Lions by the score of 34-10.
The victory also saw the Vikings rush for a team total of 275 yards, the most all season, and the most since November 4, 2007, in which the Vikings rushed for 378 yards against the San Diego Chargers. This was a historic day as Adrian Peterson would solidify himself in NFL history books as having the most rushing yards in a single game, with 296.
With the win, the Vikings (3-5) are now sitting in third place in the NFC North with an extremely easy few games coming up. They will be facing the Chicago Bears this week on Monday Night Football, a team that is in second place in the NFC North, but also who has lost three straight games after starting the season 5-1. Detroit now falls to 3-5 and are now in last place in the NFC North. Their schedule also gets easier as they face the Washington Football Team this Sunday afternoon.
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