Vikings rookies and reserves rumble over Falcons, 41-28


Teddy Bridgewater is undefeated as a starting quarterback. The rookie, making his first career start in place of the injured Matt Cassel, guided the Vikings (2-2) to a 41-28 win over the Atlanta Falcons (2-2) on Sunday at TCF Bank Stadium.

Bridgewater was forced to leave the game late in the fourth quarter after suffering a sprained ankle. Fortunately, the Vikings say he didn't sustain any structural damage to his ankle.

Before the injury, Bridgewater engineered seven scoring drives. He finished 19-for-30 for 317 yards and 27 rushing yards, including a 13-yard touchdown. His brightest series was the game-winning drive late in the fourth quarter. Trailing 28-27, the rookie guided the Vikings down the field on a nine-play, 87-yard drive capped off a rushing touchdown by Matt Asiata, according to Pro Football Talk.

Jim Souhan notes that Bridgewater is the first rookie quarterback in the NFL this season to pass for 300 yards in a game.

Bridgewater wasn't the only rookie or reserve to gash the Falcons defense. Rookie running back Jerick McKinnon exploded with 18 carries for 135 yards and Asiata rushed for 78 yards and three touchdowns.

Jarius Wright led Minnesota in receiving with a career high eight catches for 132 yards.

As a team, the Vikings piled up 578 yards of total offense. Atlanta, after scoring 56 points in a win over the Buccaneers last week, had 411 yards of total offense.

Blair Walsh also had a big day for the Vikings. He made 4-of-5 field goal attempts including a 55-yard try to give Minnesota a ten-point lead with 3:38 left in the game.

Minnesota played without starting tight end Kyle Rudolph, linebacker Chad Greenway and right guard Brandon Fusco, all of whom were injured in last week's loss to the Saints.

The Vikings have a short turnaround as they play under the lights of Lambeau Field Thursday night against the Green Bay Packers.

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