Vikings earn sixth straight win with comeback victory over Commanders


Kirk Cousins ​​threw two touchdown passes, Harrison Smith knocked out Taylor Heinicke to tie the score, and the Minnesota Vikings came back to beat the Washington Commanders, 20-17, on Sunday and extend their winning streak to six.

Playing his first game in Washington as a visitor, Cousins ​​bounced back from an interception late in the first half and came back after one of the many big hits he absorbed to lead a drive of 68 yards that ended with a field goal from Greg Joseph. .

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Washington Commanders cornerback Danny Johnson (36) and teammates react after Johnson intercepted a pass during the first half against the Minnesota Vikings, November 6, 2022, in Landover, Maryland.
(AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Smith’s interception midway through the fourth quarter gave the Vikings the ball in the red zone. Cousins ​​connected with Dalvin Cook on a 12-yard TD pass, which was one of his best throws of the game and made up for some earlier inaccuracies. He finished 22 of 40 for 265 yards.

After an unnecessary roughness penalty on the first field goal attempt allowed Minnesota to run more time off the clock, Joseph connected at 28 yards with 12 seconds remaining to maintain the winning streak.

Justin Jefferson caught Cousins’ first touchdown pass in the first quarter and had a 47-yard completion in the fourth. Jefferson finished with seven catches for 115 yards as the Vikings (7-1) extended their lead atop the NFC North and avoided what would have been their first loss since Sept. 19 at Philadelphia.

Washington Commanders quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) is hit from behind by Minnesota Vikings linebacker Za'Darius Smith (55) during the first half, November 6, 2022, in Landover, Maryland.

Washington Commanders quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) is hit from behind by Minnesota Vikings linebacker Za’Darius Smith (55) during the first half, November 6, 2022, in Landover, Maryland.
(AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Heinicke’s magic wore out on the interception after throwing two touchdown passes, including an inexplicable triple-cover heave that Curtis Samuel went down with after a Minnesota defender ran into an official and the crowd chanted his name. He couldn’t lead another winning streak, and the Commanders (4-5) saw their winning streak come to a halt at three.

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Heinicke was 14 of 27 for 139 passing yards and rushed four times for 17 yards.

WEIRD GAME

After Antonio Gibson gave Washington a strong position on the court to start the second half with a 45-yard kickoff return, Heinicke provided one of the highlights of the game with one of the weirdest games of the NFL season.

Heinicke made the risky decision to throw the ball through the air from midfield like a Hail Mary, and it looked like a certain interception until Minnesota safety Camryn Bynum collided with back judge Steve Patrick , who was trying to get out of the way. Samuel edged Smith and cornerback Patrick Peterson and caught the goal line.

COUSINS MISTAKE

The Vikings tried for extra points in the final minute of the second quarter, leading 7-3 and Washington winning the ball back at halftime.

They were within goal range at 26 when Cousins ​​tried to connect with Jefferson in the end zone. Instead, the throw beat Jefferson and into the arms of Washington cornerback Danny Johnson for his first career interception.

INJURIES

Vikings: CB Cameron Dantzler left in the first half with an ankle injury and was quickly sent off after halftime. He was previously listed as questionable with a neck injury. … DT Dalvin Tomlinson missed the game with a calf injury.

Commanders: WR Jahan Dotson (hamstring) missed a fifth straight game and LB Cole Holcomb (foot) a second straight.

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NEXT

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) holds the ball after scoring a touchdown against Washington Commanders during the second half on November 6, 2022 in Landover, Maryland.

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) holds the ball after scoring a touchdown against Washington Commanders during the second half on November 6, 2022 in Landover, Maryland.
(AP Photo/Julio Corte)

Vikings: Visit the Buffalo Bills next Sunday.

Commanders: Head to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles on Monday, November 14.


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