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After Further Review: Vikings Pair of Passing TDs

After Further Review is a deeper look at plays or stats after Vikings games…

The Vikings delivered a pair of passing touchdowns in the final minute of the first half to take a 20-14 lead.

Although the distance to gain and the time remaining were noticeably different, both scores involved quick passes by Sam Bradford, who went 31-for-40 and posted his first game with 300-plus passing yards as a Viking (307).

Here's a look at the two scoring plays:


Q2, 1:06 left; First-and-10 at the Washington 20: The Vikings line up with Cordarrelle Patterson on the outside, Stefon Diggs to his left in the slot and Kyle Rudolph on the same side of the formation at tight end.

Minnesota sends Diggs down the field ahead of a crossing route by Patterson and Rudolph. Bradford quickly spots that linebacker Will Compton is responsible for covering Rudolph and is a step behind. Compton (near the end of the arrow on the screenshot) gets caught up in traffic with Patterson and Washington cornerback Josh Norman, allowing Rudolph to catch the football at the 16-yard line with time and space to turn up the field.

Rudolph also benefits from a downfield block by Diggs to get the ball across the goal line.


Q2, :05 left; Third-and-goal at the Washington 3: The Vikings started this drive at the Washington 33 thanks to a fumble forced by Linval Joseph that was recovered by Everson Griffen.

The Vikings gained 28 on a deep pass to Diggs immediately to set up a first-and-goal at the 5 with 24 seconds. Minnesota ran for a gain of 2 on first down. Washington had the play on second down covered, and Bradford smartly threw the ball away.

The Vikings go with the heavy package, bringing in Nick Easton as an extra blocker on the left of Jake Long. They have Rudolph and Rhett Ellison in as tight ends and Adam Thielen in as the only receiver. Matt Asiata is the lone running back, and Bradford is under center.

Minnesota motions Thielen all the way between Bradford and Asiata, and Norman follows across the field between the Redskins linebacker and safety. Thielen reverses course and heads toward the right sideline with more than a step on Norman, who is still responsible for the receiver in man coverage. Thielen catches the ball at the 3 with Norman more than a yard deep in the end zone, allowing the speedy receiver plenty of time to get the ball across the goal line.

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