Mark Craig's five extra points

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 8, 2013 - 1:51 AM

Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson finally showed up on offense Thursday, here catching a 2-yard touchdown pass from Christian Ponder in the second quarter.

Photo: McKENNA EWEN •,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

1. About time on Patterson

Nine games into a lost season, Cordarrelle Patterson finally became visible on offense. On the Vikings’ third possession, he actually caught — gulp! — two balls on one drive. Lined up wide right, he caught a 20-yarder to the Redskins 21-yard line. Later, after a boneheaded unnecessary-roughness penalty by Redskins linebacker Perry Riley Jr. gave the Vikings first-and-goal at the 2, Patterson notched the first TD catch of his career on a well-designed play. Lined up to the left, he came in motion, then released into the right corner of the end zone. Cornerback Josh Wilson had no chance against a bigger target on the move. The whole drive might have been one of the better ones of the season. Offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave alternated throwing the ball left three times and right three times. One of the throws left was a 5-yarder to running back Adrian Peterson spread wide in a five-receiver set. It was one of the few times Ponder has looked comfortable and the offense hasn’t looked stale. Ponder was 6-for-6 for 44 yards.

2. New approach with CP84’s returns

The Redskins kickoff team wanted no part of Patterson, who came into the game leading the league with a 36.7-yard average. In the first half, the Redskins pooched three kickoffs, popped one up one to the 1-yard line and squibbed the last one. It actually worked in the Vikings’ favor in the first half as their average starting point off kickoffs was the 28. That’s 2 yards better than their NFL-leading starting point coming into the game. Of course, Washington’s approach limited the chances of giving up a touchdown. In his first seven NFL games, Patterson tied the NFL career record for most touchdowns of 105 yards or longer (two). Joe Webb returned the opening kickoff 9 yards to the 28. A.J. Jefferson returned one 21 yards to the 35. Toby Gerhart returned one 15 yards to the 27. Patterson went 23 yards to the 24. And on the final kickoff of the first half, Patterson went 14 yards to the 25. So, to recap, the two worst starting points in the first half came when Patterson returned the ball. Not a bad fallback plan if future opponents opt to kick away from Patterson.

3. Tacklers whiffing and walloped

The Vikings missed as many tackles as you’ll see in an NFL game. Especially by the winning team. Of course, you may never see another receiver run as hard and deliver as many running back-type blows as Pierre Garcon did. The Redskins trailed 14-10 and were at their 48-yard line when Robert Griffin III threw over the middle to Garcon. Safety Andrew Sendejo raced in, lowered his shoulder and … got walloped. Garcon flattened him at the Vikings 38-yard line, avoided linebacker Chad Greenway and ran 18 more yards before being stopped.

4. Ponder’s deep ball had no shot

Here’s another head-scratcher from Musgrave — Vikings win the toss, get the ball and … call three pass plays in their first four snaps. Adrian Peterson overlooked … again. And the drive ended with Ponder throwing a weak deep ball that traveled 43 yards into double coverage and had absolutely no chance of being caught by its intended target, Greg Jennings. Safety Brandon Meriweather intercepted it and returned it to midfield. It took a goal-line stand from the defense to fall behind only 3-0.

5. RG3’s arm strength, moxie

Anyone who thinks the Vikings wouldn’t have drafted Robert Griffin III if they had the No. 2 overall pick in 2012 are, well, nuts. Yeah, they had Ponder, whom they had selected 12th overall in 2011. But guys like RG3 have the ability to erase everything bad around them. Perfect example. Third-and-goal from the 11-yard line late in the first half. The Redskins had just been penalized 5 yards for a false start on tackle Trent Williams. The Metrodome crowd was as loud as it has been all season as the Vikings led 14-10. Then both defensive ends — Jared Allen and Brian Robison — converged on Griffin. As they’re blasting him, Griffin delivers a strong pump-fake and throws a laser as he’s falling backward. It splits Greenway and cornerback Marcus Sherels for an 11-yard TD to tight end Jordan Reed.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


NY Mets - B. Colon 6:05 PM
Washington - T. Roark
Baltimore - U. Jimenez 6:05 PM
NY Yankees - B. McCarthy
Kansas City - Y. Ventura 6:05 PM
Cleveland - D. Salazar
Seattle - F. Hernandez 6:07 PM
Toronto - R. Dickey
Chicago WSox - S. Carroll 6:08 PM
Detroit - D. Price
Philadelphia - C. Hamels 6:10 PM
Miami - H. Alvarez
Pittsburgh - G. Cole 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Wood
Milwaukee - M. Fiers 6:10 PM
Cincinnati - J. Cueto
Tampa Bay - A. Cobb 6:10 PM
Boston - C. Buchholz
Houston - B. Oberholtzer 7:05 PM
Texas - N. Martinez
St. Louis - S. Miller 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - K. Hendricks
Arizona - A. Chafin 7:10 PM
Minnesota - K. Gibson
LA Angels - W. LeBlanc 9:05 PM
Oakland - S. Gray
San Francisco - M. Bumgarner 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - Z. Greinke
Colorado - J. De La Rosa 9:10 PM
San Diego - R. Erlin
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Buffalo 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Green Bay 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Carolina 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Detroit 9/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Tampa Bay 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville 9/28/14 3:05 PM
San Diego
Atlanta 9/28/14 3:25 PM
Philadelphia 9/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
New Orleans 9/28/14 7:30 PM
New England 9/29/14 7:30 PM
Kansas City
Carolina 6:00 PM
Pittsburgh 6:00 PM
Boston 6:30 PM
Nashville 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Philadelphia 6:30 PM
Detroit 7:30 PM
San Jose 8:00 PM
Arizona 9:00 PM
Vancouver 9:30 PM
San Jose
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(24) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(11) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(25) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(12) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(9) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
NC State
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(22) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(13) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
North Carolina 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(17) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Duke 9/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
(8) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(21) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(18) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters



Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon




question of the day

Poll: Which struggling team is in the worst shape?

Weekly Question