The Minnesota Vikings played host to the San Diego Chargers on one of maybe nicest weather days I have taken in at TCF Bank Stadium in the second season at this stadium.
The pregame was so awesome with all-time great and Hall of Fame quarterback, Fran Tarkenton blowing the Gjlarhorn signaling the Vikings are coming. The opening coin toss also involved Vikings legend, Mick Tingelhoff as the Vikings honorary captain. What a great touch involving 2 legendary and Hall of Famers in Tarkenton and Tingelhoff.
The first half was boring compared to the second half and I really thought the Vikings would go into half up 10-0 until the unfortunate third and 18 conversion by the Chargers and from there we see Chargers quarterback, Phillip Rivers connect with Keenan Allen for a touchdown which really quieted the crowd almost in shock considering the Chargers really never showed much life in the first half.
It is the game of football with no for sures. The ensuing kickoff goes to the Vikings with a little over a minute and the Vikings decide to play in conservative ending the first half which really drew out the boo birds. I was of the mind I could not believe the team did not go for points either.
One positive in the first half was kicker, Blair Walsh who connected on a much needed field goal for the team and himself. I was disappointed after the Vikings strip quarterback Rivers deep inn Charger territory and having a chance to get 7 out of it. I really was disappointed when Bridgewater threw what I thought was a catchable ball to Vikings tight end, Kyle Rudolph only to see him drop it. The drive did end in 3 so at least it was points.
Walsh’s kickoffs were as strong as I have seen so far this year as well. The Vikings are up 10-7 at half with the Chargers getting the ball to start the second half so hang on.
The biggest 3 plays of the second half occurred in the first drive by San Diego which I really thought changed the momentum of the game big time.
First Vikes defensive tackle, Tom Johnson sacks Rivers setting up a 4th down deep in Chargers territory then the ensuing punt is taken by Marcus Sherels who had a great return into Chargers side of the ball. The third and maybe the dagger in the Chargers heart was when Teddy handed the ball to Adrian Peterson who we see take it 43 yards for 6. Wow, just like that it is 17-7.
I thought the defense played the best half of the season in the second half of the game. The defensive unit for the second week in a row shut down the opponents run game this time holding Chargers running back, Melvin Gordon to 51 yards.
The interception by Chad Greenway on a tip ball and taking it 91 yards back for 6 sealing the deal might be one of the coolest returns I have ever seen. The wall of 10 defenders that was set up was incredible with no sight of any Chargers at all. I wanted him to score so badly but it did seem like it took forever.
The game was incredible to be at and see so many positives. I really liked the efforts by 2 rookies in particular and they were Trae Waynes who had to replace the injured Xavier Rhodes and I also loved the play of Linebacker, Eric Kendricks who lead the team in tackles.
I loved the play of Anthony Barr along with Mr. Hustle Everson Griffen. It was such a great team effort by the defense and so much appreciated.
On the offensive side of the ball I really loved the amount of players that were involved today such as Adam Thielen and Cordarelle Patterson and yes I know Charles Johnson was hurt but it was still nice to see these 2 contribute positively.
The game by Adrian was amazing to watch and after last week’s fumble problem it was so nice to not see it happen in such an important game in helping the Vikes to get to 2-1 and not 1-2.
The weather was amazing, the team was amazing and in summary it was a great day to be at the Bank and take in a game where we are seeing Minnesota start to look like the team that so many predicted would be a much improved team.
Thanks for reading