The box score booklets are about 20 pages these days, but here are three stats that stood out in the Vikings 26-16 win over the Lions at the University of Minnesota Sunday.
It was a complete win, and a stat on offense, defense and special teams help prove it.
Vikings 42 rush attempts:
The Lions won the coin toss but decided to defer, and the Vikings opted to give the ball to Adrian Peterson early and often.
Minnesota wanted to control the line of scrimmage against Detroit. Early success, a trick play and a commitment to continuing to run the ball helped the Vikings rack up 199 yards on the ground (4.7 per attempt). An example of persistence occurred on the Vikings second possession. A loss of 2 on the first play was followed by a gain of 7 to set up third-and-5. Although the next play — a pass from Teddy Bridgewater to Mike Wallace — was stopped just shy of the sticks, the Vikings showed they were determined to run the ball.
Peterson finished with 29 carries for 134 yards.
The Vikings, meanwhile, held the Lions to 38 rushing yards (2.4) a week after allowing 230.
8 quarterback hurries, 8 passes defensed
The Vikings under Head Coach Mike Zimmer want to be a high-pressure defense, and they were on Sunday and both ends of pass plays.
The Vikings recorded eight quarterback hurries of Matthew Stafford and eight passes defensed. What's more, the pressure came from multiple places with eight different defenders, including the starting front four, linebackers Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks and safety Harrison Smith recording a hurry.
Seven different Vikings players recorded pass deflections, led by defensive end Brian Robison's two.
Vikings 44.0 net punting
Jeff Locke averaged 44.7 yards on his three punts and worked with the coverage team to help have a net of 44.0. Locke boomed a 53-yarder that Golden Tate had to fair catch and a 39-yarder that Lance Moore fair caught at the Detroit 8. Marcus Sherels was able to tackle Tate after a gain of just 2 yards on a punt early in the fourth quarter.
Lions punter Sam Martin, meanwhile, averaged 44.3 yards on four punts, but Detroit netted just 34.5, thanks to Sherels' elusiveness and solid effort by the return team. Sherels' best of the day was a 31-yarder in the third quarter to give the Vikings the ball at the Lions 34.
Minnesota scored six plays later on a 1-yard plunge by Zach Line.