The Lions dominated the first half. They did a great job on the ground with Kevin Jones (15 carries/95 yards). You have to like the commitment to the running game that they're making which wasn't evident earlier in the season.
Defensively, they did a great job against the run (no rusher had over 35 yards) all game. They also did a good job of limiting the Vikings' big plays.
Negatives for the Lions:
Offensively, Jones only had five yards on the ground in the second half and QB Joey Harrington struggled to find a rhythm virtually all game. It's also clear rookie WR Roy Williams has lost his explosiveness due to the ankle injury that has lingered for several weeks. They badly need another receiver to step up and make plays.
Defensively, they weren't able to get pressure on QB Daunte Culpepper in the second half (no sacks) after posting three sacks in the first half. Culpepper had too much time to throw on the Vikings' final two scoring drives.
Positives for the Vikings:
Offensively, it was a struggle for their high-powered offense to move the ball in the first half but they kept plugging away in the second half and were able to score when they had to. You have to give the Vikings credit. Last year, they probably don't win a game where they're trailing by 12 going in to the fourth quarter without start WR Randy Moss.
It was good to see TE Jermaine Wiggins continuing his fine play. What's more amazing is that he almost was cut before the season started. Additionally, second-year WR Nate Burleson continued to show that he has the trust of Culpepper.
Defensively, they did a great job against the pass and limited the Lions to less than 100 yards in the air. The Lions didn't put the ball up much but when they did, they had a hard time finding an open receiver.
Negatives for the Vikings:
Offensively, they couldn't get the running game jump-started again. That's going to be a critical issue down the stretch when they have to play in cold weather games.
It's apparent veteran WR Marcus Robinson is struggling with the foot that he sprained a few weeks ago. He is having trouble getting off the line and getting open.
Defensively, the tackling was atrocious in the first half. The linebackers seemed to move out of their gaps and they lacked any gap control leaving Kevin Jones huge holes to run in.
Lions-Vikings Post Game
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