EAGAN, Minn. — Jalyn Holmes’ first career NFL sack felt familiar.
The rookie defensive lineman picked up his first quarterback takedown in Sunday’s win over the Jets as he sacked Jets rookie Sam Darnold late in the fourth quarter of a 37-17 win.
It was a position Holmes had been in before.
“Sam Darnold was my last sack in college and my first sack in the league,” Holmes noted Wednesday.
Sure enough, Holmes had a strip-sack of Darnold in December when his Ohio State Buckeyes earned a 24-7 win in the Cotton Bowl over the quarterback and Southern California.
Holmes’ big moment Sunday came just after the 2-minute warning, when he powered Jets left tackle Kelvin Beachum into the backfield just as Darnold stepped up in the pocket.
“I beat [Beachum], but [Darnold] kind of ran into me,” Holmes said with a smile. “I just got off the ball and rushed as hard as I could.”
Holmes’ notable moment came in front of a host of family members at MetLife Stadium.
“At the moment, there really wasn’t too much emotion because I had to get ready for the next play,” Holmes said with a laugh. “But when we got off the field, it was good moment for me that I had with myself for all the hard work I had to get here.
“And it was big for my family … my whole family was at the game so it was great they got to see it in person,” Holmes added.
The fourth-round pick played 18 defensive snaps on Sunday and has been on the field for 42 this season.
Zylstra snags 1*st* NFL catch
The town of Spicer, Minn., made sure to celebrate with Brandon Zylstra.
The Vikings rookie wide receiver hauled in his first career catch Sunday, running a deep crossing route to snag a 23-yard reception from Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins early in the third quarter.
The Minnesota native’s catch led to an 11-yard touchdown run from Vikings running back Latavius Murray, and Zylstra said he kind of forgot about it until he reached the locker room.
“I honestly didn’t think twice about it until after the game,” Zylstra said. “I got to my phone and had more texts than usual. That’s when it kind of sunk in a little bit.”
Zylstra is in his first season in Purple after playing in the Canadian Football League in 2017. He had 100 catches for 1,687 yards and five touchdowns for Edmonton this past season.
Zylstra’s catch came on his only offensive snap Sunday, but he said it was the byproduct if his growth and preparation in recent months.
“Night and day difference from Week 1,” Zylstra said. “I’m starting to learn the speed of the game and starting to feel a lot more comfortable every week.
“I’m just ready for whatever they throw at me … ready for my name to be called at any point whether it’s special teams or offense,” Zylstra said. “I’m just trying to be ready at all points.”
Hunter’s sack streak continues
Danielle Hunter’s sacks streak is alive and well.
The NFL announced Wednesday that Hunter and Vikings safety Jayron Kearse will now split a sack on Darnold on the final play of the third quarter. The sack was originally credited to Kearse in full.
Hunter also had a half-sack earlier in the game, meaning he now gets credit for 1.0 sack in Sunday’s win. Hunter now has at least a full sack in all seven games this season, and is tied with Rams DT Aaron Donald for the league lead with 8.0 sacks.
If Hunter picks up a sack Sunday against New Orleans, he would tie the Vikings franchise record of consecutive games with a sack with eight. The record is shared by Everson Griffen (2017), Jared Allen (2011) and Jim Marshall (1969).
For the Vikings: Tom Compton (knee), Anthony Barr (hamstring), Xavier Rhodes (foot), Andrew Sendejo (groin) and Dalvin Cook (hamstring) did not participate. Riley Reiff (foot) and Linval Joseph (ankle/knee) were limited. Zylstra (neck), Anthony Harris (knee) and Kentrell Brothers (groin) were full participants.
For the Saints: Josh LeRibeus (ankle), Jermon Bushrod (not injury related) and Max Unger (hand) did not participate. Terron Armstead (knee), Cameron Meredith (knee), Craig Robertson (hamstring) and Taylor Stallworth (ankle) were limited. Marcus Williams (groin) was a full participant.