The Minnesota Vikings win 13 games in a season for the first time since 2017 with a 29-13 win over the Chicago Bears. The win was the second by double digits the Vikings had on the season.
They started things off with a bang, as quarterback Kirk Cousins found wide receiver K.J. Osborn for a 66-yard catch that set up a four-yard touchdown to wide receiver Adam Thielen. Right afterward, kicker Greg Joseph missed the extra point, his only miss of the day as he connected with his other two extra points and all four field goals, but one didn’t count.
Clock management continues to plague the Vikings, as a litany of issues led to Joseph’s field goal not counting. Head coach Kevin O’Connell continues to have issues managing the clock and it is becoming a growing cause for concern.
They did pull the starters coming out of halftime, and Alexander Mattison got some extended playing time and he took advantage of it. Mattison scored two touchdowns on the ground, including 54 yards on 10 rushes. He was running with great vision and an extra level of aggressiveness about him that helped him dominate the Bears defense.
One thing that was good for the Vikings is they didn’t punt until there was less than a minute to go in the game. They did turn it over twice and had the end of half fiasco, but not punting it was objectively great to see.
Duke Shelley was great in his return to Soldier Field. He was draped all over the guy he was defending while getting two pass breakups and an interception to help seal the game in the fourth quarter.
Next up for the Vikings is the wild card round. They will either be the three seed and host the New York Giants or the number two seed with a loss by the San Francisco 49ers and face one of the Green Bay Packers, Seattle Seahawks or Detroit Lions.