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Continued: Patterson lone Vikings bright spot, running for TD and nearing kick return record

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: December 23, 2013 - 6:25 AM

The Vikings sacked Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton twice late in the game, but their rush had little impact on him for most of the game.

The Vikings expected to have a hard time getting to Dalton, who has the fastest snap-to-release time of any NFL quarterback, according to ProFootballFocus.

“We knew the ball was going to come out fast,” Allen said. “This is the fastest I think I’ve ever seen. … We knew going in that it was going to be tough [to get pressure], that we were going to have to get our hands up and bat some balls down and put bodies in his face because that ball was going to come out quick.”

Everson Griffen had 1½ sacks, sharing one with Allen.

Scary fall for Simpson

Vikings receiver Jerome Simpson had a frightening landing while trying to catch a pass along his team’s sideline in the second quarter.

Simpson leapt high for the ball and was flipped by safety Reggie Nelson. Simpson spun and looked as if he might land on his head but fell on his shoulders.

The team’s medical staff checked him out, but he was able to return.

“It was pretty scary,” he said. “I just credit my flexibility and athleticism to be able to save me on that. I just know how to fall sometimes and I fell on my shoulders to try and protect myself. A lot of guys said they were praying for me as soon as I went down.”

Injury update

Running back Toby Gerhart reinjured his right hamstring while chasing down Bengals defensive end Carlson Dunlap on a fumble return on the game’s opening series. Gerhart tackled Dunlap at the 4-yard line, but he came up hobbling.

Gerhart missed the Philadelphia game last week and was listed as questionable for Sunday’s game because of that injury.

“Hamstrings are weird,” he said. “It felt good all week. I practiced all week and everything felt good. Then I tried to open up and chase him and it grabbed again.”

Middle linebacker Audie Cole suffered a sprained right ankle in the first quarter. He had an MRI in the locker room and was in a walking boot after the game.

Cornerback Chris Cook did not start after missing the Philadelphia game because of a knee injury. But his replacement, Shaun Prater, injured his ankle covering a punt and missed some time.

Dalton went at Cook when he was in the game.

“I don’t want to talk about injuries,” Cook said. “I had some struggles today and I had to fight through it and finish the game. Prater went down so I had to come back in and take over.”

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