New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings 9/14/14 NFL Score, Recap, News and Notes
Final Score: Patriots 30, Vikings 7
September 14, 2014
In Week 2, the New England Patriots made their first foray of the year into the NFC North with a trip to Minnesota to take on the Vikings. The Pats were coming off a surprisingly limp showing against the Dolphins in Week 1, and were looking to even their record at 1-1. Meanwhile, the Adrian Peterson-less Vikings were fresh off a Week 1 beat-down of the Rams and trying to go 2-0 to stay on top of their competitive division.
Let’s take a closer look at the key players and statistics in this one and try to figure out why things played out the way they did. We’ll also take a look ahead to Week 3 to see what’s in store for both teams.
What Happened: A lot of people expected this game to be close, but it really didn’t pan out that way. Things were wild at first, with the Vikings notching the initial score on a nifty 25-yard Matt Cassel pass to Matt Asiata. The Pats responded on a one-yard Stevan Ridley rush TD and added a field goal to make it 10-7 after one quarter.
In the second, it was all Patriots, as Tom Brady connected with Julian Edelman for a nine-yard score, and just before halftime they got a big special teams play on a 58-yard touchdown off a blocked field goal courtesy of Chandler Jones. It was 24-7 at the half.
The New England defense held strong in the second half, but their offense couldn’t finish off drives either. Stephen Gostkowski posted a 47-yard field goal in the third and a 27-yarder in the fourth for the only scoring of the second half.
In the end, it was a dominant effort by the Patriots as they evened their record with a solid 30-7 win.
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The Stars: The Patriots defense was the star here, coming up with four interceptions and holding the Vikings to just 2.8 yards per rush.
Speaking of the rush, Ridley anchored a solid day on the ground with 25 attempts for 101 yards and a score. As a team, New England posted 150 yards rushing.
On the other side, Matt Asiata came up with a valiant effort overall, logging 36 rush yards with 48 receiving yards and a TD.
The Goats: The major stat that stands out here is Cassel’s four interceptions. Sure, he was playing from behind most of the day and had to lean on the pass with no Adrian Peterson, but four picks is simply inexcusable.
Both teams had trouble on third downs: The Pats were 5-14; The Vikings 4-11. New England doesn’t get off the hook for penalties, either; They had 15 for a whopping 163 yards.
Injuries: Both teams came out of this one pretty clean, and Jamie Collins (Patriots LB) was the only one ruled out on the injury report.
Outlook: Looking ahead to Week 3, the Vikings get a tough draw by heading to New Orleans to take on the Saints. (September 21, 1:00 PM ET on FOX.)
Meanwhile, the Patriots will be at home to face the Raiders, who are making their second cross-country trip to visit an AFC East opponent this year. (September 21, 1:00 PM ET on CBS.)
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