GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) – It is not the way in which the NFC North champion Minnesota Vikings have been hoping to carry out as they put together for the playoffs.
Minnesota (12-4) received the division title due to 11 wins in one-point video games, however the Vikings additionally suffered a pair of lopsided losses that elevate questions on their means to make the postseason.
Their final blowout defeat — a 41-17 loss to Inexperienced Bay on Sunday – solely provides their doubters extra gas.
“You actually do not have a superb feeling or a superb style in your mouth whenever you stroll away from this one,” quarterback Kirk Cousins stated.
The prolific QB threw three interceptions and misplaced a fumble because the Packers scored 41 straight factors after the Vikings took an early 3-0 lead. The Packers turned all 4 turnovers into touchdowns, with Darnell Savage Jr. scoring on a 75-yard interception return.
With out large assist from star receiver Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook dinner, Cousins could not carry the Vikings. The Packers restricted Jefferson to 1 catch and Cook dinner to 27 yards dashing.
“I simply did not play nicely sufficient tonight,” Cousins stated. “You simply should play higher, that is the primary factor.”
In a most uncommon season, the Vikings (12-4) have a .750 profitable share regardless of being outscored by their opponents by 19 factors (414-395). Their season opener 23-7 residence win over the Packers was their solely win determined by greater than eight factors.
Their 4 losses have come by a median margin of twenty-two.3 factors, which is near a 34-23 loss to Detroit. The Vikings fell too 24-7 in Philadelphia and: 40-3 at residence in opposition to Dallas Earlier than Sunday’s fiasco in Inexperienced Bay.
“I believe it is as a result of after we lose lopsided video games, we straight contribute to them,” coach Kevin O’Connell stated. “The rating can get out of hand instantly whenever you flip it over, you quit a 100-yard discipline objective, you do not rating whenever you block a punt and it is of their 1 yard. line and exit with three (factors).”
All of it occurred on Sunday.
The Vikings had first-and-goal on the 1 after a blocked punt, however settled for a discipline objective to take a 3-0 lead. Inexperienced Bay’s Keizen Nixon returned the following kickoff 105 yards to offer the Packers the lead for good. Every week after kicking a 61-yard discipline objective to beat the New York Giants, Greg Joseph missed each of his discipline objective makes an attempt.
Minnesota’s offense must be excellent to offset the NFL’s second-worst protection in each yardage and factors allowed.
More often than not, that was due to Cousins and Jefferson, who set franchise data for catches and receiving yards. Jefferson opened the season by catching 9 passes for 184 yards and two touchdowns in opposition to the Packers.
Packers cornerback Jair Alexander known as Jefferson’s season-opening efficiency “a fluke.” Alexander backed up that efficiency Sunday when the Packers held Jefferson to fifteen yards.
“Simply all of the yards he had, I simply known as it a fluke,” Alexander stated. “He was catching passes when there was nobody on him. For instance, “Yeah, nicely, good job.”
The Vikings’ greater considerations on offense are paramount.
Minnesota misplaced two beginning quarterbacks to accidents within the first quarter of Sunday’s recreation. Middle Austin Schlottman suffered a damaged fibula and proper deal with Brian O’Neill harm his calf. Schlottman was the starter instead of Garrett Bradbury, who missed his fourth straight recreation with a again damage.
Chris Reed, who had not performed an offensive recreation all season, led Schlottman beneath middle. Olisaemeka Udoh accomplished the correct kick. The Packers seen the distinction.
“They’re all the way down to their third middle,” defensive deal with Kenny Clark stated. “It was undoubtedly an enormous loss for them. That they had lots of errors so far as scoring and all that. That put them behind the 8 ball.”
The Vikings stay assured their offense can return to the postseason in reverse time.
“I believe that is what’s nice about this soccer staff, there isn’t any worries,” large receiver Adam Thielen stated. “I believe if something it should inspire us to come back again and have a extremely good week of apply after which take it daily.
“It is a very close-knit group and we will use them for good, however we actually should put that chip on our shoulder after such a heavy defeat.”
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