The Vikings ended up winning by a touchdown last night, but with under a minute to go in the game, it looked like a coaching gaffe might contribute to yet another loss.
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After Washington's Roy Helu ran the ball to the Vikings' four-yard line with 38 seconds to go, Leslie Frazier called timeout. The call was somewhat baffling, as the clock was ticking on Washington and the stoppage gave them a chance to calmly prepare their next offensive play from the sidelines.
One person who was particularly unhappy with Frazier's timeout was wide receiver Greg Jennings, who ignored coaches' recent admonition to keep complaints in-house with this sideline outburst:
Then, he pouted:
After losing his mind, Jennings thought better of it and relaxed on the bench. I laughed. http://t.co/kVtnZdPl9l
... and the Vikings held on for a 34-27 victory. Frazier said after the game that he called the controversial timeout because he wanted to give his exhausted defensive players a breather.
After coming back from a 13-point deficit in the third quarter -- thanks, unbelievably, to a strong performance from Christian Ponder, who in typical Vikings tragicomical fashion separated his shoulder while diving for a touchdown (he came up inches short) -- the Purple used a workhorse-like Adrian Peterson to control the ball and cling to their narrow lead in the fourth.
Here's AP's most memorable run from his 75-yard performance:
But ultimately, let's not forget that this was a game between two terrible teams (Washington is now 3-6; the Vikings are 2-7). That reality was never more apparent than during this full-of-fail Washington fake punt from the fourth quarter (note how the player the punter attempts to throw the ball to was left completely uncovered by oblivious Purple special teamers):
Still, it was the Vikings' first victory in North America since last holiday season. So for one day at least, we'll Skol! and try to keep the cynicism at a minimum.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at [email protected]