It took a little longer to get some excitement from the Minnesota Vikings during their third preseason game, but the night ended up being full of fireworks.
After the Minnesota Vikings’ defense allowed the San Francisco 49ers to score 14 points on their first two offensive drives of the game, it seemed like it was going to be a long night for the purple and gold in their third game of the 2017 NFL preseason. But thanks to their backups, Minnesota scored an astonishing 32 points in the second half and came away with the win over the 49ers on Sunday.
The majority of their top plays this week came in that explosive second half from their reserve players. But the Vikings’ home crowd did not seem to mind as the team’s second-string offense and defense were able to lead Minnesota to their second victory of the preseason.
Vikings linebacker Eric Kendricks had one of the few highlights from the team’s first half performance. Towards the end of the second quarter, Kendricks flew threw the middle of San Francisco’s offensive line to bring 49ers quarterback Brian Hoyer down for the sack.
Minnesota got their first touchdown of the night following a nifty sidearm pass from quarterback Case Keenum to rookie wide receiver Rodney Adams, who took the catch and ran nine yards for the score.
At the end of the night, Vikings safety Antone Exum will have an interception included on his stat sheet. But if it were not for the beautiful hit delivered by Minnesota cornerback Jabari Price that caused the ball to pop out of the hands of San Francisco receiver Louis Murphy, Exum would have never had the chance to get his hands on the football.
As the third quarter was coming to a close, Jerick McKinnon let the Vikings coaching staff know that the team’s open kick returner job was his for the taking. McKinnon had no problem taking a kick 108 yards all the way to the other side of U.S. Bank Stadium and in for a touchdown.
Play of the night:
This was not too hard to pick as Minnesota walked out of the building with a preseason win thanks to the efforts of backup quarterback Taylor Heinicke on the final play of the game. Heinicke’s two-point conversion immediately caused the crowd at U.S. Bank Stadium to erupt at a glass-shattering volume in celebration of their team’s victory.