05 Nov 2018, 05:46 IST
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings turned their line of defense free on Matthew Stafford in a dominant efficiency that will have made the outdated Purple Individuals Eaters proud.
This unstoppable cross rush was led, predictably, by Danielle Hunter.
Hunter had Three half of of Minnesota’s franchise-record 10 sacks plus a fourth-quarter fumble return for a landing , tormenting Stafford and the Detroit Lions all afternoon in a 24-9 victory by the Vikings on Sunday.
“We knew he favored to throw the ball down the sphere, in order that’s one thing that basically helped us lots as a result of he held on to the ball,” stated Hunter, who moved into the NFL lead with 11 half of sacks for the season. “So so long as we executed the frenzy plan, we knew we would be able to get again there.”
Hunter additionally was credited with 9 tackles and 4 quarterback hits. The Vikings (5-3-1) restricted the Lions (3-5) to a season-low 214 complete yards, and their strain on Stafford was so intense he actually had items of rubber pellets from the substitute turf flushed out of his left eye within the second quarter. The Lions had a streak of 25 consecutive video games with a minimum of 14 factors come to a crashing halt.
“The fault is on everyone,” stated Stafford, who was sacked a complete of 13 instances over the primary seven video games. “I’ve to get the ball out quicker.”
After Dalvin Prepare dinner dropped a pitch from Kirk Cousins and A’Shawn Robinson recovered on the Detroit 28 with Minnesota main 17-6, the Lions transformed a pretend punt to maintain that drive alive. Two performs later, Stafford ran proper on the quick facet of the sphere and tried an option-style flip that Kerryon Johnson was unable to safe, and Hunter scooped it up on his technique to the simple rating.
“I do not know why he pitched it. He might’ve simply run,” Hunter stated. “I assumed it was a cross all the best way, however I assume he did not wish to get hit or one thing.”
That occurred lots, together with a complete of thrice within the second quarter on two separate possessions contained in the Minnesota 20 that compelled the Lions to accept area objectives by Matt Prater.
After a throw by Cousins to Adam Thielen close to midfield was intercepted by Darius Slay, the Lions made it so far as the 12-yard line. Hunter sacked Stafford on consecutive snaps, sharing the primary one with Everson Griffen.
“He is a freak of nature. He seems to be like a superhero,” Griffen stated of the fourth-year defensive finish. “I anticipated that from him.”
9 of the 10 sacks by the Vikings got here from their entrance 4, together with 2 half of by backup defensive sort out Tom Johnson. Throughout the heyday of the Purple Individuals Eaters, the Vikings had 9 sacks in a sport in 1968, 1969 and 1970. In addition they did it in 1993. However this was the record-setter, due to a well-timed mixture of blitzes referred to as by coach Mike Zimmer and the relentless rush by Hunter and his pals up entrance.
“We all know if we give them time, they will get there,” security Harrison Smith stated. “It is enjoyable to be part of.”
With one burst by means of an enormous gap within the left facet of the road , Prepare dinner made clear he is wholesome once more with a 70-yard achieve within the second quarter to arrange a brief landing catch by Thielen. In keeping with the NFL’s NextGen Stats tracker, he averaged 22.07 mph throughout that run for the quickest within the league this season. The Lions have allowed a rush of 50-plus yards in 4 completely different video games this 12 months.
NOT THIELEN IT
Thielen’s streak of 100-yard receiving video games ended at eight in a row, leaving him in a tie for the document with Lions legend Calvin Johnson. The Lions double-covered him usually, making the most of the absence of fellow standout Stefon Diggs to rib harm, and Thielen completed with solely 4 receptions for 22 yards.
STACKS OF SACKS
The earlier excessive sack complete for Stafford in his profession was seven, in opposition to the Vikings in 2015. He has been sacked 5 instances or extra on 15 completely different events, six of these by the Vikings. The Lions are 3-12 in these video games.
“It is a massive shot to our pleasure,” left guard Frank Ragnow stated.
The opening kickoff was ominous for the Lions when Prater slipped after his leg swing, an unintentional squib the Vikings returned to their 35. Apply squad promotion Chad Beebe caught back-to-back passes on the primary drive of his NFL debut. The second netted 13 yards on fourth-and-2 from the Detroit 37. Latavius Murray completed the march with a 1-yard landing run.
Lions: DE Ziggy Ansah (shoulder) returned from a six-game absence with had a sack within the closing seconds of the second quarter that compelled the Vikings to accept a area objective. … LT Taylor Decker left within the third quarter with an undisclosed harm however later returned.
Vikings: LB Anthony Barr (hamstring) and LG Tom Compton (knee) have been held out for the second straight sport, and SS Andrew Sendejo (groin) missed his fourth straight contest. … Backup TE David Morgan hobbled off within the third quarter with a left knee harm.
Lions: Play at Chicago subsequent Sunday.
Vikings: Play at Chicago on Nov. 18, after the bye.
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