Knowing the playbook may be overrated.
Quarterback Josh Dobbs was pressed into action five days after joining the Vikings in a trade because rookie Jaren Hall suffered a concussion on the second offensive series of the game and the veteran looked right at home in the Minnesota offense. Dobbs ran for a touchdown and threw for two more, including a six-yarder to Brandon Powell with 22 seconds left on the clock that put the Vikings up 31-28.
The Falcons' last-ditch effort to tie or win the game fell short and the Vikings were able to celebrate an improbable road win.
Dobbs was 20-of-30 for 150 yards, led the Vikings with seven carries for 66 yards and also hit Trishton Jackson for a two-point conversion that tied the game in the third quarter. He did lose two fumbles and take a sack that resulted in a safety, but the positives outweighed the negatives and made for a remarkable performance under the circumstances.
While Dobbs started eight games for the Cardinals, Taylor Heinicke was making his first start of the season for the Falcons. Heinicke was 21-of-38 for 268 yards, a touchdown, and an interception that came just after Dobbs' two-point throw to Jackson. That touchdown drive was set up by a Bijan Robinson fumble and the two turnovers wound up being killers for the Falcons.
They also kicked field goals on their first four trips into Vikings territory, so the offense fell short in multiple ways for the home team. They are now 4-5 with a trip to face Dobbs' former teammates in Arizona ahead of them next weekend.
Minnesota will face another NFC South club in a matchup with the 5-4 Saints in a game that has playoff implications on both sides. That's a big change from where Dobbs was at this time last week and the Vikings couldn't be happier about the change of scenery.