Hartman: Blown lead further dims Vikings' season

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 25, 2013 - 6:05 AM

Vikings could have made a move with Chicago and Detroit losing, but a 16-point lead vs. Packers didn’t last.

Packers quarterback Matt Flynn was pressured by Vikings defensive end Brian Robison (behind) in the fourth quarter.

Photo: Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Leslie Frazier wasn’t completely out of his mind the other day when the coach said the Vikings could still finish 8-8 and make the playoffs if the team played its best football.

After all, a year ago, the Vikings won their final four games to earn a postseason spot.

So why would it be impossible to start against a beat-up Green Bay team Sunday and go on a six-game winning streak that would even the Vikings’ record and give them a chance to make the playoffs? Frazier talked about how there wasn’t any dominant team in the NFC North and the way things were going, anything could happen.

Some of the right things happened for the Vikings in the division Sunday. The Bears got walked over by the Rams 42-21 and the Lions lost to the Buccaneers 24-21, so they are both 6-5. The Packers were 5-5 going into Sunday’s game against the Vikings at Lambeau Field.

The Vikings still have home games with the Bears and the Lions and were in a position to help their own situation if they played like they did in the first three quarters at Green Bay. They led 23-7 early in the fourth quarter, but they blew the 16-point lead and wound up tying the Packers 26-26 in overtime.

Flynn steps in

Yes, it is hard to figure out the Vikings. They couldn’t stop quarterback Matt Flynn, who was traded by the Seahawks to the Raiders in April and released; picked up by the Bills in October and again released; and picked up by Green Bay in November. Flynn was looking for a job when Packers starter Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone earlier this month, otherwise he still would be unemployed.

Flynn, who previously backed up Rodgers with the Packers from 2008 to ’11, replaced Scott Tolzien midway through the third quarter and proceeded to complete 21 of 36 passes for 218 yards and one touchdown. He found a way to lead the wounded Packers to 16 fourth-quarter points to send the game into overtime and keep the Packers from defeat.

“[Flynn] gave them a spark,” Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said. “I think he knows the offense a little bit, obviously, and he is familiar with us. They went to their no-huddle hurry-up [offense], but penalties are what really killed us. I think we had a third-and-10 offsides and then a pass interference. We had two penalties that kept drives going.

“In the fourth quarter, that hurry-up got them into a rhythm and we shot ourselves in the foot with some penalties. We fought back, got it to overtime, and obviously ended with a tie.”

The Vikings would have had a much better shot at the playoffs had they not blown other big fourth-quarter leads, losing in the final 10 seconds to the Bears, with 51 seconds left to the lowly Browns and with 35 seconds remaining against Dallas. The Vikings are 2-8-1, with three losses more than the division-leading Bears and Lions.

Seattle made the playoffs in 2010 with a 7-9 record, winning the NFC West and becoming the only team with a losing record to make the playoffs in a regular-length season. So it’s not impossible, but it is unlikely.

Respects Badgers

In losing 20-7 to Wisconsin at TCF Bank Stadium on Saturday, Gophers football coach Jerry Kill described the Badgers as the best team the maroon and gold has played this year.

“No disrespect to anyone else, but they’re that good,” Kill said. “I really believe in the next week or two, you’ll see them in the top 10 in the country. They’re playing very well at the right time, we’re playing very well.”

After studying video of the game, Kill said: “We played hard and we did some great things, but at the end of the day, as I go back over and over, the second quarter was a big quarter that we didn’t take advantage of. We had the ball inside the 50-yard line and we turned the ball over.”

Kill also talked about having the ball inside the Badgers 35 and turning it over.

“We had three turnovers, and that’s three possessions where you could get 80 to 100 yards,” he said “And in a game like that, you’ve got to be able to have that. Because the momentum shifted there in the second quarter. And then you’re down, they come out and score, you’re down two scores, and then you press a little bit.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Yankees - LP: M. Pineda 0 FINAL
Toronto - WP: D. Hutchison 2
Detroit - LP: M. Scherzer 3 FINAL
Chicago WSox - WP: C. Sale 6
Chicago Cubs - WP: F. Doubront 5 FINAL
St. Louis - LP: J. Masterson 1
Cincinnati 1 Top 7th Inning
Pittsburgh 3
Minnesota - K. Gibson 6:05 PM
Baltimore - C. Tillman
Philadelphia - J. Williams 6:10 PM
NY Mets - B. Colon
Miami - J. Cosart 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Harang
Boston - A. Webster 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - J. Odorizzi
Cleveland - T. Bauer 6:10 PM
Kansas City - J. Shields
Detroit - K. Ryan 6:10 PM
Chicago WSox - C. Bassitt
Texas - R. Ross Jr. 6:10 PM
Houston - S. Feldman
Colorado - T. Matzek 7:10 PM
Arizona - V. Nuno
Chicago Cubs - T. Wada 7:15 PM
St. Louis - M. Gonzales
Los Angeles - Z. Greinke 7:40 PM
San Diego - I. Kennedy
Milwaukee - M. Fiers 8:05 PM
San Francisco - J. Peavy
Oakland - J. Samardzija 8:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Rasmus
Washington - S. Strasburg 8:10 PM
Seattle - R. Elias
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
BYU 35 FINAL
Connecticut 10
(6) Jacksonville St 7 FINAL
(8) Michigan State 45
Bowling Green 31 FINAL
Western Ky 59
TX-San Antonio 27 FINAL
Houston 7
Colorado State 31 FINAL
Colorado 17
UNLV 13 FINAL
Arizona 58
Penn State 26 FINAL
UCF 24
Troy 10 FINAL
UAB 48
(7) UCLA 28 FINAL
Virginia 20
Western Mich 34 FINAL
Purdue 43
(5) Ohio State 34 FINAL
Navy 17
Appalachian St 14 FINAL
Michigan 52
Ga Southern 23 FINAL
NC State 24
Boston College 30 4th Qtr 7:35
Massachusetts 7
West Virginia 17 3rd Qtr 12:15
(2) Alabama 20
Rice 10 3rd Qtr 8:25
(17) Notre Dame 28
(10) South Dakota St 18 3rd Qtr 7:21
(24) Missouri 28
Fla Atlantic 7 3rd Qtr 13:35
(22) Nebraska 31
California 31 3rd Qtr 6:22
Northwestern 7
Marshall 28 3rd Qtr 11:53
Miami-Ohio 10
UC Davis 0 3rd Qtr
(11) Stanford 38
Arkansas 21 3rd Qtr
(6) Auburn 21
(16) Clemson 7 1st Qtr 10:46
(12) Georgia 0
Liberty 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(8) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(1) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(17) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Colorado 0 2nd Half 10:00
Seattle 1
New England 2 1st Half 10:00
Toronto FC 0
Columbus 6:30 PM
Montreal
FC Dallas 7:30 PM
Chicago
Real Salt Lake 9:30 PM
San Jose
Portland 9:30 PM
Vancouver FC
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Chicago 6:00 PM
Indiana
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

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 Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
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

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How many fantasy football teams do you draft?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close