Here’s the best of our coverage from today. Enjoy!
Minnesota drove into the red zone relatively methodically, but the Redskins defense tightened up, ending the game with back to back sacks from Trent Murphy and Preston Smith.
The Washington defense didn’t allow a point in the second half. The Redskins improve to 5-3-1 with the 26-20 win, while the Vikings fall to 5-4.
We’ll update this thread later with all of our coverage from the stadium.
Fourth quarter, 5:44 left
Outside linebacker Preston Smith dropped into his zone in front of a slant, stuck out a long arm and tipped a Sam Bradford pass to himself, ending an efficient Minnesota drive and preserving a 23-20 lead for now.
Washington was able to turn the possession into another field goal, giving Minnesota the ball back down 26-20 with 2:31 left.
Fourth quarter, 9:33 left
Place kicker Dustin Hopkins connects on a 50-yard field goal to cap another ball-control drive, and Washington goes ahead, 23-20. We’re live-blogging the finish; Link above.
End of third quarter
Hopkins booted the tying field goal late in a quarter during which Washington held the ball, ran it and let Minnesota’s offense, so hot in the second period, cool off.
Midway through the quarter, Hopkins also capped a third-quarter opening drive that ran 11 plays, covered 59 yards and lasted more than six minutes. Details and more frequent updates on the live blog.
Washington had more than 11 minutes time of possession in the third quarter, and the two field goals allowed them to knot the score.
If you hadn’t watched that half and were just checking the statistics, you’d might think Sam Bradford came out of the gate on fire, and Kirk Cousins was moping through a mediocre game. The first quarter was all Cousins, however, while the second was all Bradford.
Cousins finished the first half 9-of-15 passing, for 125 yards and two touchdown passes. Bradford was 16 for 20, 202 and two. Stefon Diggs is Minnesota’s leading receiver, with five catches for 102 yards. Vernon Davis leads Washington with three for 66. Running back Rob Kelley has eight carries for 34 yards, while Vikings counterpart Jerrick McKinnon has five for 15.
Minnesota is outgaining Washington, 237-188, but the Redskins have the rushing edge, 63-37. Adrian Peterson is still on IR for the Vikings.
The only turnover of the game, Chris Thompson’s fumble, and the inability of the Redskins defense to keep the Vikings off the board for less than a minute, provided the halftime margin.
Five seconds left in second quarter
The Vikings, with the help of a 36-yard Bradford-to-Stefon Diggs pass, got on the board with an eight-play, 67-yard scoring drive midway through the second. Then Washington lost all momentum. The Redskins went four and out, and Bradford completes seven passes on the next drive, including three to Diggs and one for a 20 yards and a touchdown to tight end Kyle Rudolph.
Then with 52 seconds left in the half, Washington hands off to Chris Thompson, who fumbles at the end of a seven-yard run. Immediately, Bradford finds Diggs for 28 yards, and with five seconds left in the half, Bradford throws a touchdown pass to Adam Thielen. So not only did the 14-point lead evaporate, but Washington goes into the half trailing. Vikings place kicker Blair Walsh misses the PAT.
Start of second quarter
Crowder’s touchdown capped a 10-play, 68-yard, 4-minute 19-second drive, and it was the only scoring in the opening period. Washingon was about the run the eighth play of another drive when the quarter ended.
Kirk Cousins finished the quarter 7 of 9 for 79 yards, and Rob Kelley got six carries, for 18 yards, in the period.
Vernon Davis scored two plays into the second quarter, and it’s 14-0. It was a 9-play, 91-yard drive in just less than five minutes. Washington looks spry after the bye. We’ll be posting frequently and in more detail on the live blog.
Washington forces Minnesota to go three and out on its first possession. The first offensive possession is similarly successful, with a 10-play touchdown drive to open things up. Kirk Cousins nearly threw a red-zone interception, but bounces back on the next play with a touchdown throw to Jamison Crowder.
Matt Jones is not only replaced as the starter by Rob Kelley, he’s replaced in the lineup of active backs. Chris Thompson will retain his third-down role, and Mack Brown, promoted from the practice squad just before the London trip, is active today. Jones, as we noted was possible on Thursday, is a healthy scratch.
The other six inactives are WR DeSean Jackson (injury), QB Nate Sudfeld (third quarterback), DL Matt Ioannidis, G Arie Kouandjio, DL Jordan Hill and T Blaine Clausell.
Minnesota is missing cornerback Captain Munnerlyn, among others.
Minnesota won its first five games this season. Washington, at one point, won four in a row. But the Vikings haven’t been victorious since Oct. 9, the Redskins since Oct. 16. In case you forgot, today is Nov. 13.
So that’s about all that needs to be said in terms of why this clash is crucial, but there’s more. Peek at the NFL standings. Of the 16 NFC teams, Dallas is 7-1 and San Francisco is 1-7. Atlanta is 6-3, Chicago is 2-6. Everyone else has three, four or five wins, including Washington and Minnesota, and there are three NFC teams with ties. So assuming the Redskins can’t catch the Cowboys for the division title, there are 12 teams in the hunt for the two NFC wild-card spots, and it’s probably going to be a jumbled mess or an exciting finish, depending on perspective.
Then of course, you have Washington playing the first of four games without suspended left tackle Trent Williams, against Minnesota’s best-in-the-league defense. And if you need to be reminded how important tackles are, look no further than the Vikings offense, which has gone in the tank since Matt Kalil and Andre Smith went out for the season.
Minnesota Vikings (5-3) at Washington Redskins (4-3-1)
Kickoff: 1 p.m. ET at FedEx Field
TV: Fox, Ch. 5 and 45. (Nationwide NFL TV maps here.) Sunday Ticket Ch. 712.
Radio: 980 AM; 92.7 and 94.3 FM.
SiriusXM: SIRI 145, SXM 227, internet 831.
Streaming: Fox Sports Go | NFL Mobile | Reddit NFL streaming thread
Line: Redskins by 2, o/u 41.5
Box score: Updates every 60 seconds here
Redskins roster | Depth chart | Injury report
Vikings roster | Depth chart | Injury report
All Insider posts about the Vikings game
Stats, Inc. game preview
Week 10 schedule & scores
The latest from around the NFL
Twitter: @MikeJonesWaPo, @lizclarketweet, @MasterTes, @JerryBrewer, @dcsportsbog, @ThomasBoswellWP, @Insider
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