In the swan song for the Metrodome the Minnesota Vikings won Sunday against the Detroit Lions 14-13.
While neither team was playing for playoffs, Minnesota came to play today and no one came to play harder than Cordarrelle Patterson.
Patterson ended his first NFL season by running for one touchdown and catching a pass for another as Minnesota. Oh, and he also set a franchise record in kick return yardage.
Patterson had a 50-yard first-quarter run for a score that gave the Vikings (5-10-1) a 7-0 lead. And he caught an 8-yard scoring pass from quarterback Matt Cassel with 9:19 left in the game at the Dome. The catch came two plays after Marcus Sherels 50-yard punt return gave the Vikings a first-and-goal from the 8 and ended a run of 13 straight Lions points. He also broke the 28 year standing record by Buster Rhymes. Patterson has 1,393 kick-return yards in his rookie season.
“What a great way to close out the Metrodome,” said Vikings Coach Leslie Frazier. “I’m so proud of our players, being able to focus on this game, not get caught up in anything else.”
And since the Vikings sat Peterson and Gerhart today Patterson was there go to player. In the first half in which the Vikings outgained the Lions 241 yards to 56, the only score came on Patterson’s play, when he lined up in the slot and took a pitch. It was his option to run or pass. He saw nobody open and got a block from Cassel, reversed field and was off for a 50-yard score, the longest run by a Vikings receiver in franchise history.
The second half appeared to be a complete reverse. It was the Lions moving the ball, with quarterback Matthew Stafford leading the Lions on three straight scoring drives. Stafford, who completed 22 of 33 passes for 217 yards (all but 43 in the second half), hit 5 of 6 for 70 yards in an 85-yard scoring drive to start the second half that tied the game 7-7 on his 19-yard pass to running back Reggie Bush.
The Lions’ next possession ended with Dave Akers’ 25-yard field goal, and the Lions made it 13-7 two plays after Vikings running back Matt Asiata fumbled the ball.
Midway through the final quarter the Vikings forced a Lions punt, which Sherels returned 50 yards. Two plays later Patterson put the team ahead for good. Asiata, who finished with 115 yards on 14 carries, had 46 of those as the Vikings ground down the clock.
“It was a great game for us, and it gave us another great memory in the dome,” Patterson said. “Now we have to get ready for next year.”