After the team’s first loss in nearly one month, the Minnesota Vikings rebounded well on Sunday afternoon. The Vikings took control of the Cincinnati Bengals, defeating them 34-7.
The Vikings were able to learn from the Week 14 loss to the Carolina Panthers and unleash everything on a depleted Bengals team.
With the win, the Vikings also earned the NFC North division championship. The championship was the franchises fourth since the renaming of the division.
This team is clicking on all cylinders and is looking as dangerous as ever. They will surely be a tough out in the playoffs.
To add on, the fact that this team may wind up having three home games — including the Super Bowl — will frighten any opponent.
Defense was stellar
Heralded as one of the best defensive units in the league the Minnesota Vikings continued that strong effort on Sunday, as it held the Bengals to just seven points.
No Bengals player was able to find any rhythm against Minnesota, including star wide receiver A.J. Green.
On Sunday, Green had just two receptions for 30 yards, which shows how fantastic the Vikings secondary is. Cincinnati’s leading receiver was Brandon LaFell, who had two receptions for 53 yards.ed on defense by linebacker Eric Kendricks, who had an outstanding afternoon.
Leading the Vikings defense was linebacker Eric Kendricks.
Kendricks had five total tackles, one tackle for loss and one pass deflection. To add on, he also made a highlight reel moment, as he intercepted quarterback Andy Dalton for a touchdown in the first half.
Keenum rebounded nicely
Quarterback Case Keenum had one of his worst starts as a Viking in Week 14 but rebounded nicely in Week 15. Keenum continues to show-off his accuracy, as he completed all but three of his passes on Sunday.
Keenum threw for 236 yards and a pair of touchdowns on Sunday.
He was able to do whatever he wanted to do against a Bengals defense that looked uninterested and lost throughout the entire game. Keenum’s top target was not a receiver though; it was a running back.
Jerick McKinnon has struggled to find his rhythm since the Chicago Bears game in Week 5, so it was good to see him break his long stretch of poor performances.
McKinnon caught seven passes for 114 yards, with his longest being a 41-yard burst to put Minnesota in excellent field position. He will be a player to watch out for come postseason time.
Murray continues his impressive play
Latavius Murray was one signee that I was very intrigued by this past offseason, and his play has backed that up.
After a poor outing against the Panthers, Murray had an outstanding game against the Bengals. Murray had 20 carries, rushed for 76 yards, and had the first touchdown of the game, which set the tone for Minnesota.
This season, Murray has eclipsed the 100-yard rushing mark just once — Week 7 against the Baltimore Ravens — but has been a solid player for the entire season.
Last season, the Vikings struggled to find any groove at running back, which led to a league-worst in the rushing yards category. The release of Vikings great Adrian Peterson and the insertion of Murray was a move that was needed, and it is paying off big time.
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