The Minnesota Vikings started their 2017 campaign with an impressive win over Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints.
Well, we waited, almost, all NFL opening weekend long to see the Minnesota Vikings play a football game and the Vikings did not disappoint. The passing game came alive and Adrian Peterson was stymied in the New Orleans backfield as the Vikings marched their way to a 29-19 victory at U.S. Bank Stadium.
One of the highlights of the game is the fact that the passing game was on fire. Not just completion percentage fire, but Sam Bradford was completing deep passes to the likes of Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen.
Quarterback Sam Bradford tossed three touchdowns in the contest with two of those scoring passes going into the sure hands of Diggs. Kyle Rudolph grabbed the other TD. Two of the passes were 15 yards or longer which is just the tip of the iceberg to show how Bradford wasn’t simply check down Charley on Monday night.
Seven different Vikings caught a pass in the contest with five of them having their longest reception of the day at 15 yards or over. Thielen had nine catches for 157 yards, Diggs had seven catches for 93 yards with those two scores, Jerick McKinnon had three catches for 32 yards, Rudolph had three catches for 15 yards and a score and Dalvin Cook had three catches for 10 yards.
Jarius Wright and Laquon Treadwell both only caught one pass, but that’s an accomplishment in itself. Both those two being simply productive is a good sign for the Vikings.
Bradford finished the night 27/32 for 346 yards and three touchdown passes. It was a really good night for Sam Bradford.
Cook was the main man out of the backfield tonight for the purple. Cook had 22 carries for 127 yards in his NFL debut. Latavius Murray barely got off the bench with only two carries. McKinnon had three carries in the ballgame.
The return of Adrian Peterson was not pretty for the former Viking. Peterson only received six carries and only scampered for 18 yards.
As a whole, the Saints were moving the ball, but were being stopped by the Vikings in the red zone resulting in four field goals for New Orleans. Drew Brees went 27/37 for 291 yards and a late touchdown in the contest.
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The Saints did have early leads after some field goals were traded back and forth, but the Vikings had a lead the entire second half. The Vikings closed out the first half with the pair of scoring throws to Diggs coming within the last 4:10 of the half. The halftime score was 16-6.
The Rudolph touchdown started the fourth quarter which put the Vikings comfortably in control at a score of 26-9. The Saints didn’t score their touchdown until garbage time with 1:56 left to make it 29-19.
All in all, it was a really fun game to watch and a really nice game from the Vikings on all accounts. Bradford and the receivers looked good, the offensive line looked adequate, Cook looked like a legit running back and the defense had a very nice outing. It was simply a nice first game of the year for the purple.
Final score from U.S. Bank Stadium, again, was 29-19. The Vikings take on the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday in the second week of NFL action. That game is set for 12:00 Central. The game from Pennsylvania will be seen on FOX.