Even more rapid thoughts from Minnesota’s win over Chicago
Cook puts the Vikings on his back: After coming away with no points on their first two drives of the second half, Minnesota running back Dalvin Cook decided to take matters into his own hands.
Cook had a major impact on the Vikings’ 17-play, 80-yard drive that ended with the game-winning touchdown. Overall, Minnesota likely wouldn’t have left the field on Sunday with a victory if not for the performance of their top running back. Cook finished the contest with 121 total yards (94 rushing, 27 receiving) on 20 touches and two touchdowns.
Minnesota’s defense gave Chicago too much hope: As good as they were at stopping the Bears’ rushing attack on Sunday, the Vikings still made too many mistakes on defense that allowed an 18-point lead to disappear.
Minnesota held Chicago scoreless on their first three offensive drives of the game. But then the Bears were able to put points on the board at the end of each of their next five drives. It resulted in the Vikings’ losing a very large lead, and it could have been disastrous if not for the comeback by the offense.
Joseph struggles at home again: Last week, Minnesota kicker Greg Joseph was the NFC Special Teams Player of the Week after his performance in Week 4 that saw him hit all five of his field-goal attempts. On Sunday, Joseph failed on both of his field goal tries.
His first attempt from 53-yards away just missed to the right of the goal posts. Then Joseph’s second attempt from 51-yards away wound up getting blocked by Chicago.
The second try wasn’t really his fault, but with that miss, Joseph has now failed to convert his last four field-goal attempts from inside U.S. Bank Stadium.
Minnesota gets a banged opponent in Week 6: A few weeks ago, the Vikings’ Week 6 matchup on the road against the Miami Dolphins felt like it was going to be a very tough matchup. After Sunday, however, Minnesota getting a win in next weekend’s contest with the Dolphins doesn’t seem as daunting.
Miami was already without quarterback Tua Tagovailoa this weekend, but then their backup signal-caller, Teddy Bridgewater, left Sunday’s loss to the New York Jets in the first quarter with injuries to his elbow and head.
In addition to Bridgewater’s injury, Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill also suffered a foot injury in their loss to the Jets, and veteran Miami cornerback Xavien Howard was inactive for the entire game due to a groin injury.
Getting a road win over Miami will still probably be significantly difficult for the Vikings next weekend, but a depleted Dolphins roster will certainly make getting a victory much easier for Minnesota.