Vikings Recap: The Seriously Confounding State Of The NFC North In Weeks Five And Six

October 25, 2022

We’ll start this recap with the leaders of the division, the victorious Vikings. They have been on a tear so far this season and went into the bye week with a 5-1 record. We will be discussing the Vikings games from week five and six.

Week Five: Vikings vs. Bears  

Vikings’ Offensive Firepower

The Vikings Offense started the game with a 12-play, 86-yard drive that made it look like the offense was finally clicking. There were a few shorter runs by Cook, and several longer passes to Jefferson, and the drive was capped off with a 1-yard scamper by Cook for a TD. Joseph made the kick and for a moment everything was right in the world, at least as far as the Vikings’ offense was concerned. 

Cairo Santos Gets A Good Start To An Exceptional Day

The Bears responded with a field goal on their first offensive drive and the score was 7-3.

The Vikings’ next drive went 11 plays and 75 yards. It was a similar drive but Mattison had a few short runs, there were a couple of longer completions to Jefferson, and a couple of nice completions to Thielen as well. Once again the drive was capped off with a short run by Cook and Joseph made the extra point.

Bears’ Offense Struggles To Maintain A Drive

The Bears’ next offensive drive was plagued with penalties, an incomplete pass, and a Danielle Hunter sack. All this leads to the Bears having to punt the ball back to the Vikings. 

Vikings’ Offense Starts To Click

On the Vikings’ 3rd offensive drive things appear to keep clicking with another touchdown drive. Cousins completes a couple of passes to KJ Osborn and a 31-yard pass to Jefferson before Jefferson completes a 23-yard pass to Cook. Mattison gets a couple of runs to gain a total of 8 yards and then Kirk throws a 1-yard pass to Jalen Reagor for his first TD as a Viking. Joseph makes the extra point and the Vikings lead 21-3 halfway through the 2nd quarter.

Vikings’ Offense Goes Dormant

At that point, the Vikings’ offense begins to stall and they stall badly. The defense is able to force the Bears into a punt on the next drive but unfortunately, the Vikings punt on their next drive as well. 

Bears’ Offense Comes Alive

The Bears’ offense finally comes alive on their next drive with a four-play 50-yard drive. The highlight of which was a 39-yard pass from Justin Fields to Darnell Mooney. David Montgomery finishes the drive with a nine-yard TD run and Cairo Santos makes the extra point. 21-10 Vikings

Greg Joseph Misses…Again

Cousins makes a few nice passes but he also misses on a few passes. They spike the ball to stop the clock and they settle for a 53-yard field goal attempt by Greg Joseph which he unfortunately misses. They go into the locker rooms with a 21-10 game but the momentum definitely seemed to be swinging in the Bears’ favor.

Bears Come Out Swinging In The 2nd Half

The Bears come out of the locker room swinging and have an 8-play 67-yard drive which is finished off with Velus Jones Jr.’s pass from Justin Fields for a 9-yard TD. They go for two but are unable to get into the endzone. 21-16 Vikings still holding onto the lead.

Joseph’s Nightmare Of A Game Continues

The Vikings’ next drive starts with an onside kick that is recovered by rookie Akayleb Evans. The Vikings get a couple of shorter runs and a completion to Jefferson before Cousins has a couple more incompletions. They settle for a 51-yard field goal attempt by Joseph, which gets blocked. 

Santos Continues To Excel

A 43-yard field goal attempt by Santos is good as the Vikings’ lead continues to dwindle. 21-19 Vikings holding on for dear life.

Kirk Continues His Interception-heavy Season

Kirk looks to complete a short pass to Adam Thielen which is unfortunately intercepted by the Bears’ Vildor. The Bears settled for a 51-yard field goal by Santos which he nails and the Bears take the lead 22-21.

Rebirth Of The Vikings’ Offense

The Vikings’ offense finally comes back to life on their next drive with a 17-play, 75-yard drive that eats 7:00 off the clock. The highlights of this drive include a 15-yard and a 13-yard completion to Irv Smith Jr. Cook and Mattison have a few short runs and the drive is capped off with a 1-yard rushing TD by Kirk Cousins. They go for two and are successful on a pass from Cousins to Jefferson. The Vikings lead 29-22.

Dantzler Seals The Victory

The next drive starts decently well for the Bears with a couple of short passes to David Montgomery that are enough to get a first down before the two-minute warning. Fields completes another pass but this time to former Viking Ihmir Smith-Marsette for 15 yards. Fortunately for the Vikings, Cam Dantzler stripped the ball and recovered the fumble to seal the victory for the Vikings. The Vikings finish off the victory with a couple of kneels by Cousins to run out the clock. 

Week Six: Vikings vs. Dolphins

The Vikings had to be nervous about the prospect of facing a third-string quarterback in Skylar Thompson of the Miami Dolphins. For whatever reason, second and third-string quarterbacks along with rookie quarterbacks have done well against the Vikings in recent years. 

Slow Starts For Both Teams

In a game that started with 7 drives that ended with punting to the other team, it did not seem that there would be much scoring at all. Fortunately, the Dolphins were able to open up the scoring on their 4th drive with a 44-yard field goal by Jason Sanders. Unfortunately, they lost their starting quarterback on the drive before when Thompson left with a finger injury after hitting his hand on Patrick Jones II’s helmet. 

Vikings’ Offense Gets Going

The Vikings responded with a touchdown drive of their own that went 7 plays for 75 yards. The drive started with a couple of longer completions to Adam Thielen and a 20-yard pass to Justin Jefferson to get into the Dolphins’ territory. Another 24-yard pass to Jefferson got the Vikings to the 2-yard line and the Dolphins committed a roughing the passer penalty to move the Vikings to the 1-yard line. Cousins was able to complete a 1-yard pass to Irv Smith Jr. for a touchdown and Joseph makes the extra point. The Vikings lead 7-3.

Harrison Smith Continues To Age Well

Dolphins miss a field goal on their next drive and force the Vikings to punt on their next drive. Harrison Smith juggles the ball for what seems like an eternity before finally reeling in an errant pass from the former Viking Teddy Bridgewater. The Vikings get down the field far enough, quickly enough to be able to attempt a 34-yard field goal which Joseph nails. The Vikings go into the locker room at halftime with a 10-3 lead. 

Slow Going 2nd Half

The second half starts fairly similar to the first as the Dolphins turn it over on downs before 6 punts between the 2 teams. 

Vikings’ Touchdown But More Misery For Joseph

However, on the Vikings’ fourth drive of the second half, they were able to drive down the field for a touchdown. The highlight of this drive was a 47-yard completion from Cousins to Jefferson. Adam Thielen reeled in a short pass from Cousins for a touchdown. Unfortunately, Greg Joseph misses the extra point so the Vikings’ lead is 16-3 instead of 17-3. 

Gesicki For Six

The Dolphins counter with a touchdown drive of their own. Bridgewater completes a couple of long passes to Tyreek Hill before ending the drive with a 4-yard TD pass to Mike Gesicki. The Vikings still lead but only 16-10.

Harrison Smith Doing Harrison Smith Things

The Vikings punt on their next drive but Harrison Smith forced a fumble on the Dolphins’ following drive. The fumble is recovered by the greatly underrated Cam Bynum. 

Dalvin Turns On The Jets

It only takes two plays for the Vikings to go 59 yards and score another touchdown. A 6-yard run by Dalvin Cook and then a 53-yard run where Cook turned on the jets after a nice cutback. The Vikings go for two and succeed with a pass from Cousins to Thielen. 24-10 lead.

Patrick Peterson Shows How Well His Game Is Aging

Bridgewater completed a 14-yard pass to Hill before throwing another interception, this time to Patrick Peterson. Unfortunately, the Vikes do not take advantage of the turnover and they end up punting the ball back to the Dolphins.

Gesicki For Six More But Not For Two

The Dolphins have a 6-play, 83-yard touchdown drive that ends with another pass from Bridgewater to Gesicki. They go for two and Gesicki is unable to convert. 24-16 Vikings still holding onto the lead.

Underrated Bynum Seals Vikings’ Victory

The Dolphins’ Sanders attempts an onside kick which is recovered by Bynum. Cousins runs out the clock by kneeling the ball two times. Vikings come out on top 24-16 and head into their bye week 5-1. 

That is it for a couple of recaps of the Vikings two most recent games before the bye week. I hope you enjoyed reading it and please come back to for more Minnesota Vikings content throughout the rest of this season and beyond.