The Minnesota Vikings season is over in a heartbreaking loss to the New York Giants. While part one ended with a dramatic long field goal, part two ends with a fourth down stop.
There were a number of reasons why the Vikings were unable to advance, with the most glaring culprit being the run defense.
SAQUON TO THE HOUSE 🏠— New York Giants (@Giants) January 15, 2023
📺: FOX pic.twitter.com/GvPirYvcUl
Allowing both RB Saquon Barkley and QB Daniel Jones to carve the run defense for their seventh-straight game over 100 yards on the ground.
The Giants as a team rushed for 142 combined yards and two touchdowns. Most egregious coming from Jones extending the play out of the pocket and the Vikings unable to respond.
Offensively, the Vikings played well. QB Kirk Cousins played as good a game as you can ask. Completing 31/39 (79.5%) passing for 273 yards and two touchdowns.
While WR Justin Jefferson was the keyed-in offensive player, it was TE TJ Hockenson who lead all Minnesota Vikings in receiving with 10 receptions for 129 yards.
In addition to the run defense, third down offense was sadly one-sided. The Giants converting on 7/13 (53.8%) of third downs, compared to 4/10 (40%) by Minnesota. Many of which were converted on running plays.
The Minnesota Vikings now go into the offseason with their focuses on free agency and the NFL Draft. Tonight wasn’t an isolated incident and expect the run defense and defensive line as a whole to be talking point.
Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn of USA TODAY Sports