Top Plays: Vikings vs. Buccaneers

We knew the Minnesota Vikings had this game in them, but they still surprised us in several ways today. First, we weren’t sure they’d put it all back together after an unfocused effort in Pittsburgh last week. Secondly, I doubt many of us saw this Keenum breakout game coming, but boy did he win the day! Great quarterbacking headlined both Vikings victories this year.

Here’s the Top Five Plays:

1st and 10 at MIN 35

(13:45 – 1st) (Shotgun) C.Keenum pass deep left to A.Thielen to TB 20 for 45 yards (V.Hargreaves III)

Thielen WK3

Instant Reaction

It’s MORE than a Thielen!!! Case airs it out early and finds Adam streaking down the left sideline in man coverage. That’s a nice shot, the Vikings strike early, and Keenum already looks much better. Dream start so far for our purple. Now FINISH the drive!

Upon Further Review

Case struck early and often against a soft Buccaneers secondary. We knew Tampa had weaknesses in their secondary. Keenum proved up to the task of exposing it, he butchered them today! That deep threat proved to unravel Tampa Bay, leaving holes all over. Pat Shurmur put together a great gameplan too.

 

1st and 10 at MIN 34

(4:02 – 2nd) (No Huddle) J.Winston pass deep middle intended for D.Jackson INTERCEPTED by T.Waynes at MIN -2. T.Waynes pushed ob at MIN 16 for 18 yards (A.Humphries)

Waynes WK3

Instant Reaction

Yeah TRAE! Let’s go man! That’s what it is! Use your speed! Take advantage of those Winston mistakes! Great recovery and sorely needed for his confidence! Huge play! First turnover for the defense this year! It’s a pretty timely one.

Upon Further Review

It wasn’t all gravy for Trae Waynes today, probably never will be, but we saw subtle improvements against Tampa Bay. He allowed a lot of catches but kept everything in front of him. He dashed back into position to garner this interception when Desean Jackson did get behind him.

Overall, the Vikings pass defense gave up a lot of yardage, but the bend don’t break strategy worked. Harrison Smith and Andrew Sendejo forced two more interceptions on ill-advised throws from Winston. It’s a strong effort considering the general lack of pass rush today.

 

3rd and 3 at MIN 41

(12:25 – 3rd) Stefon Diggs Pass From Case Keenum for 59 Yrds

Diggs WK3

Instant Reaction

Free play hurt them deep and YES! GOT IT! We can most definitely DIGG that! Diggs runs through a jersey grab, turns back inside, and then gets a bit too cocky before finishing the play in the end zone! Anything is possible! Diggs is unstoppable!

Upon Further Review

Stefon Diggs continues his ascension to the upper echelon of NFL receivers. It’s been special to watch his entire story and development. Stefon showed all the traits you want in a primary receiver. Hands, leaping ability, speed, superb route running, and even more. A 47 yard strike and vertically skilled leap for a score preceded this long touchdown. Diggs dealt multiple powerful blows today.

 

1st and 10 at MIN 25

(0:00 – 3rd) DeSean Jackson 25 Yd pass from Jameis Winston (Nick Folk Kick)

Brock WK3

Instant Reaction

For the life of me I have no idea why some thought Brock would be better than Waynes. He’s gets abused all drive and Zimmer decides to put him in man coverage against D-Jax. It didn’t work at all. Stop putting our weaker corners on islands!

Upon Further Review

Make no mistake, I’m ecstatic with the defensive effort today. Looking at just 17 points allowed, and how quickly Tampa became one-dimensional, the defense put up a winning effort. I’ll take lot of yards given up if they’re forcing turnovers. There may be some coverage holes, but it will be up to the pass rush to cover them up. Brock isn’t just going to step in and fix everything.

Brate’s and Jackson’s TDs made us a tad nervous here before Sendejo and Smith got their interceptions on the next two drives. Playing Jameis Winston reminds me a lot of playing Eli Manning.

 

3rd and 2 at MIN 19

(4:52 – 4th) C.Keenum pass short right to D.Cook to TB 45 for 36 yards (K.Tandy)

Cook WK3

Instant Reaction

We’re still COOKIN’! This Dalvin guy is a finisher! Grows stronger as the game goes on. Eats up all that yardage, becoming a threat in the pass game. B-E-A-U-TIFUL! This game is over!

Upon Further Review

We can’t review this game without mentioning Dalvin Cook. He handled a heavy workload and Tampa held him to 3.6 yards per carry. The added threat in the passing game broke them, however. Dalvin put past receiving struggles behind him and feasted on a soft middle that Keenum, Thielen, and Diggs created earlier on in the contest. Dalvin’s a powerful offensive weapon.

 

Final Take

I saw this as a statement win. A clean game against a team who’s hoping to contend. The Vikings have several such tests coming in the next month, so it’s important to see them show flashes of dominance. The offense is clicking, the defense is stout. Zimmer and Shurmur put together high level game plans. I’m not scared of anybody when our Vikes play like they did today. A showdown with Detroit comes next and I’m excited. I love the big games!

2 thoughts on “Top Plays: Vikings vs. Buccaneers

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