Vikings wrap up 2020 season with shootout win in Detroit

Justin Jefferson set records and Kirk Cousins attempted The Griddy as the Vikings ended the year with a win.
Kirk Cousins

The Minnesota Vikings wrapped up their 2020 season with a win as they defeated the Detroit Lions in a 37-35 victory on Sunday afternoon.

The season finale got off to a rough start with Marvin Jones catching a 43-yard touchdown pass from Matthew Stafford but the Vikings answered with part of a big day from Alexander Mattison. The Vikings running back put Minnesota on the board with a 28-yard reception from Kirk Cousins to give Minnesota a 7-6 lead after the first quarter.

After Stafford threw his second touchdown of the game to Quintez Cephus, Cousins responded with another touchdown pass to Ameer Abdullah to put Minnesota ahead 14-13. Matt Prater gave the lead back to Detroit with a 54-yard field goal but Cousins wrapped up the first half with a 40-yard touchdown to Chad Beebe to send Minnesota into the locker room with a 21-16 lead.

The third quarter got off to another rough start as Jones hauled in his second touchdown of the day to put Detroit on top, but the third quarter belonged to Justin Jefferson. The Vikings receiver surpassed Randy Moss' franchise record and Anquan Boldin's NFL record for receiving yards by a rookie and helped spark Minnesota's offense.

With Jefferson putting the finishing touches on a stellar rookie campaign, the Vikings got a touchdown from Mattison and a Dan Bailey field goal to go ahead 31-23. Adrian Peterson helped Detroit get back into the game with a two-yard touchdown run, but the Lions couldn't get the two-point conversion.

Nursing a 31-29 lead heading into the fourth quarter, the Vikings unleashed Cousins on a one-yard touchdown sneak to extend their advantage. The score was topped off with the Vikings quarterback attempting (and effectively killed) The Griddy.

Unfortunately for the Vikings, Dan Bailey missed his second kick of the day on the PAT and Detroit had another chance to tie the game after a two-yard touchdown by D'Andre Swift. Stafford's pass sailed incomplete however and the Vikings held onto their two-point advantage.

With the Vikings holding onto a late lead, Minnesota had a chance to add to its lead with a field goal from Bailey. Instead, the Vikings opted to go for it on fourth and inches and Mattison picked up 16 yards to seal the game and help the Vikings finish the season with a 7-9 record.

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