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Next-Day Stats: Vikings-Cardinals YAC it Up in Week 2

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings came up short Sunday in a 34-33 shootout against the Cardinals.

The wild affair included explosive plays by each offense and rough stretches at times for the defenses.

Minnesota made multiple strides by playing cleaner on offense, but Arizona QB Kyler Murray made enough plays to overcome being picked off twice by the Vikings defense. The plays included two of the 20 least probable completions in the NFL in Week 2 (more on that below).

Each week this season, we are taking a deeper dive at some "next-day stats" with an eye on the ever-increasing number of Next Gen Stats. References to rankings across the league include all games except for tonight's game between the Lions and Packers.

1. YAC-king it up

The Vikings (419) and Cardinals (474) combined for 893 yards of offense. According to Next Gen Stats, Minnesota totaled 131.61 of its 244 receiving yards after the catch. K.J. Osborn led the way in the category with 44.21 of his 91 occurring after a reception.

The Cardinals totaled 205.9 of their 400 receiving yards after catches. Rondale Moore did an overwhelming majority of his damage (92.98 of 114 total yards) after catches, and Minnesota native Maxx Williams was next on the team (58.82 of 94 yards).

There were 22 players across the league who averaged more than 1 yard-after-catch-per-reception above expectation in Week 2. Moore (5.7) and Williams (4.3) were at the top of the league list.

Moore's 77-yard touchdown catch — the third-longest play of Week 2 — included 41 yards after he caught the ball in space. According to Next Gen Stats, that bonus was 31 yards greater than the 10 expected.

Williams managed to corral a pass that bounced off Eric Kendricks after Dalvin Tomlinson initially hit it at the line of scrimmage. He rumbled for a gain of 34 that included 22 yards after the catch, some 19 greater than the 3 YAC that were expected, converting a second-and-10 on what could have been an incompletion or interception in Cardinals territory.

Osborn, by the way, gained 35 yards after the catch on his 64-yard touchdown. According to Next Gen Stats, he was expected to gain 23 after securing the football.

View the game action photos from the Vikings-Cardinals game during Week 2.

2. Improbable yet possible

Believe it or not, the ricochet play wasn't classified as the least or second-least likely completion by Murray.

His 19-yard pass to Christian Kirk that picked up a third-and-16 five plays later had a completion probability of 16.5 percent, the fourth-least likely completion of Week 2.

Murray's fade-away dagger to Kirk on fourth-and-5 ranked 18th in the NFL with a completion probability of 29.2 percent.

Murray finished with a completion percentage of 80.6 percent, which ranked third in Week 2, and was calculated as 13.8 percentage points above expectation. In Week 1, he had a completion percentage of 65.6 that was 4.4 points above expectation.

Kirk Cousins finished with a completion percentage of 68.8, which was right along the lines of his expected rate of 68.1.

3. The long haul

The game featured four of the longest plays and two of the longest tackles of Week 2.

The following plays ranked in the top 20:

3. Moore ran 88.3 yards on his 77-yard touchdown, his first career score.

11. Xavier Woods traveled 74.4 yards before and after his interception, which he returned 27 yards.

16. Osborn ran 69 yards during his 64-yard touchdown for his first career score.

20. Dede Westbrook traversed 65.9 yards in the name of a 10-yard punt return.

The following long tackles ranked in the top 20:

7. Jalen Thompson ran 52.1 yards before tackling Cousins after a career-long 29-yard run.

14. Nick Vigil covered 44.9 yards in pursuit of Williams on the 34-yard play.