Philadelphia- The expectations at first were not the highest, especially after the loss of Teddy Bridgewater and ineffectual first week play of Adrian Peterson. But with the defense turning in stellar performance after stellar performance and the resurgent play of Sam Bradford, expectations began to grow. This is why being brought down to earth with a bump can seem so painful. The Vikings, after 5 games a virtually turnover free football turned in a sloppy performance, losing 4 turnovers and allowing the Eagles to pound Bradford into bad throws and other mistakes in a 21-10 loss Sunday.
The Vikings and Eagles played a mistake filled first half, turning the ball over to each other on five consecutive possessions. The Vikings cracked the scoreboard first after neither team scored in the first quarter, the Vikings drove 50 yards in 12 plays and got to the Eagles 30, the drive stalled and Blair Walsh hit a 48 yard field goal. But the Vikings lead was as short-lived as they could come as Josh Huff of the Eagles fielded the ensuing kickoff at the 2, barreled through an alley of blockers and after shaking through a weak tackle attempt by Walsh raced to the end zone, finishing a vaulting flourish. Insult was added to injury when the Eagles took the extra point off the board after a roughing the kicker penalty put the ball at the 1 and QB Carson Wentz dashed in for the conversion score for 2 points. After a trade of punts, Sam Bradford was strip sacked as the Vikings were driving in Eagles territory, the Eagles put a field goal on the board after an ensuing 10 play 35 yard drive and led at the half 11-3
The backbreaker may have very well come in the 3rd quarter when after the Vikings only gained 2 yards on their opening drive of the 2nd half after back to back sacks of Bradford, the Eagles went 77 yards in 9 plays using 5:51 of clock time; capping the drive was a 4 yard touchdown pass from Wentz to Dorian Green-Beckham that extended the Eagles lead to 15 at 18-3. The Vikes responded with a long drive of their own 14 plays 69 yards and 7:24 that bridges the 3 and 4th quarters but came away with nothing as they failed to gain 1 yard at the Eagles 6 that would have gotten them back to within 8 with a score. The Vikes defense held the Eagles to a 3 and out, but Marcus Sherels fumbled the subsequent punt and the Eagles turned that miscue into points with a field goal. The Vikes finally got into the end zone with a Bradford to Cordarrelle Patterson touchdown pass but it was way too way too late. The final score was Eagles 21 Vikings 10
Sam Bradford was 24-41 for 224 yards a touchdown and his first interception of the year. Matt Asiata had 12 carries for 55 yards. Cordarrelle Patterson led all receivers with 7 catches and 67 yards.
Eric Kendricks led the team with 9 tackles, 8 solo. Andrew Sendejo and Xavier Rhodes each had an interception
Blair Walsh made his lone field goal attempt and extra point attempts, Jeff Locke had 4 punts placing 2 inside the 20, with a long of 50 yards.
Cordarrelle Patterson was one of the few bright spots offensively netting catches on every time that he was targeted.
“I do have faith in this football team and obviously, you know, faith is belief without proof,”Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said Monday. “Right now, I don’t have any proof, so I have to have faith that we’ll get it done. I think we will. But until we prove it, it’s just throwing stuff against the wall. We’re trying to figure out everything right now. This is a gut-check day.”
That’s the fact
The Eagles are the only team to return a kickoff for a touchdown in the NFL this season, having done it for the second time this season (they returned kick for a TD against Washington last week the first time in franchise history that they had kickoff return scores in consecutive weeks)
The Vikings head back into divisional play and back into primetime as they head to the Windy City to face the 1-6 on Monday Night Football on Halloween Night. Kickoff is 7:30 CDT (8:30 EDT)