In a generally sloppy first half fitting of preseason finales, the Minnesota Vikings fell behind 7-0, then worked their way out of the deficit thanks to a turnover.
The Los Angeles Rams took their first drive 62 yards, capped by a 1-yard touchdown pass from first overall pick Jared Goff to Kenny Britt.
But after that, the Vikings started to get to Goff. The Rams rookie finished the first half 6-for-17 for 67 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Despite falling behind 7-0, the Vikings worked their way back late in the second quarter, getting field goals of 30 and 34 yards from Blair Walsh before an interception led to Minnesota taking the lead. Justin Trattou’s big plays continued when he batted a Goff pass at the line of scrimmage and big nose tackle Toby Johnson made the diving interception, putting the Vikings in scoring position. Brad Sorensen, subbing for an injured Joel Stave, took advantage, hitting Jhurell Pressley on a short pass that the speedy running back turned into a 28-yard touchdown to give the Vikings a 13-7 lead at the half.
The Rams opened their second half with a 13-play, 59-yard drive that was capped by a 35-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein, but the Vikings quickly – as in, 15 seconds – answered when rookie Jhurell Pressley returned the ensuing kickoff return 106 yards for a touchdown to extend the Minnesota lead to 20-10.
However, another big special teams play gave the Vikings a comfortable cushion. The Rams muffed a punt when Jayron Kearse hit return man Paul McRoberts and David Morgan recovered on the 6-yard line. Three plays later, C.J. Ham barreled in from 1 yard out for a 27-10 lead.
The Rams wouldn’t go quietly, however, as they went on a 12-play, 61-yard drive that ended with a 2-yard touchdown pass to McRoberts and a two-point conversion, cutting the Minnesota lead to 27-18.
It got closer quickly when Aaron Green broke a tackle at the line of scrimmage and scored from 26 yards out, cutting the lead to two points after the extra point with 1:53 to play.
The Vikings held on for the 27-25 win, despite having to punt back to the Rams, using two sacks on the final two Los Angeles snaps.
With their starting quarterback out for the season after Teddy Bridgewater’s knee injury in practice Tuesday, the Minnesota Vikings weren’t immediately announcing the holding out of healthy starters for tonight’s game.
Prior to the game, they announced that WR Charles Johnson, RB Jerick McKinnon, CB Xavier Rhodes, S Michael Griffin and TE MyCole Pruitt won’t dress. None of them practiced on Tuesday before Bridgewater was hurt.
The starters didn't play.