The Vikings dominated the first half vs. the Lions, at least on the statsheet. That domination might have extended to the scoreboard had the team not committed a series of boneheaded gaffes.
It started early, with Jim Kleinsasser getting called for a false start that cost the team a chance to punch the ball into the end zone. They would settle for a field goal and a 3-0 lead.
Things could’ve really turned around then for the Lions, who were given a gift first down when Brian Robison went offsides on a punt. Jason Hanson, however, missed on a 48-yard field goal attempt, leaving the score at 3-0.
Penalties weren’t the Vikings’ only enemies; they had killing turnovers too. Adrian Peterson was charged with a fumble when an attempted toss to Percy Harvin on a reverse play went awry. Then, after breaking a tackle and apparently busting through for a long touchdown sprint, Peterson was caught from behind by Phillip Buchanon who punched the ball out, leading to a touchback for Detroit.
Thankfully for the Vikings, Brett Favre was able to complete a couple of long passes to Sidney Rice in amongst the Keystone Kops crap, and Peterson managed to hold onto the ball for one touchdown scamper.
It looked like the Vikes might escape the first half without surrendering a point to Detroit, but the Lions got their offense together for the final drive of the second quarter – mostly by throwing it to Calvin Johnson – and cut the score to 10-3.
The Vikings had better clean up the sloppiness or the Lions just might jump up and bite them in the second half.