View from the end zone:
We're back with our in-game blog/narrative/rantings/whatever-you-want-to-call-it. It's Week 7, with the Green Bay Packers hoping to ruin Christian Ponder's first NFL career start.
Here, we'll let you know what's happening just as if you were sitting in Section 123, in the corner of the south end zone. Right now, at 2:20 p.m., we see a lot of people wearing wedges of cheese on their noggins. Must be a Wisconsin thing.
2:15: Guy Limbeck, Rochester Post-Bulletin, looks at Vikings decativation sheet. Sees Antoine Winfield's name on it. Agrees this one could be 45-10 Packers victory.
2:31: Packers head onto field -- half the stadium cheers in a somewhat drunken roar. They've been at it since 8:00 a.m., we hear.
2:34: Donovan McNabb says NFL story about his losing his job because he was lazy is "crazy." Reminds us of song:
3:07: Chris Doleman, newly inducted into Vikes' Ring Of Honor, blows big horn. Crowd (the purple one) goes nuts, Zeppelin song begins...big plastic ship sways, cue fog machine...It's on...
3:11: Christian Ponder introduced. Huge pop. No chants of "We want Webb" ... yet.
3:16: Ponder's first series, with the Vikes starting at the 27-yard-line.
3:20: First pass from scrimmage, 72-yard strike to Michael Jenkins. It just happens to be the longest passing play by a rookie QB in Vikings history.
3:23: VIKINGS 7, PACKERS 0 -- Ponder tosses 2-yard TD strike to Visanthe Shiancoe.
3:32: VIKINGS 7, PACKERS 7 -- Rodgers tosses 2-yard TD strike to John Kuhn to tie it up.
3:33: That was fast. Packers made it look extremely easy.
3:37: Ponder starts second series. Might have to score perhaps ... 75 points ... to make up for woeful Vikings defense.
3:40: Tweet from Strib's Jim Souhan says it all: "Really weird in here. Every big play is greeted by a huge cheer, no matter which team makes the play."
3:43: Ponder's first big test: Third and seven. Incomplete. Vikes forced to punt. Would McNabb have completed that one? For those of you who say yes, we got one word for 'ya:
3:46: Aaron Rodgers is sacked by Jared Allen, as No. 69 sets a Vikings record with sacks in nine straight games. Drive over. Packers forced to punt.
3:51: Tweet from Vikes' PR guy Jon Ekstrom, on Allen: "The NFL record is 10 straight games with a sack. They do not count half sacks. Allen has 6 straight games with non-shared sacks."
3:53: Vikes punt after Ponder's first three-and-out of the game. Pack's Randall Cobb fumbles, Vikes take over on 50-yard-line.
3;59: The Vikings convert on a third-and-three, Ponder to Harvin. This looks a lot different that McNabb-led squad.
4:02: VIKINGS 14, PACKERS 7 -- Adrian Peterson runs one in from the 1-yard-line to put Minnesota up by a touchdown.
4:03: Tweet from KARE/BMTN anchor Eric Perkins: "Y'all still clamoring for Andrew Luck?"
4:13: Jared Allen sacks Rodgers again in red zone. Green Bay drive stalls, have to settle for field goal.
4:14: VIKINGS 14, PACKERS 10 -- Pack gets closer on 37-yard Mason Crosby FG.
4:18: After kick, Vikes' Brian Robison penalized for kicking T.J. Lang in the swimsuit area. Ouch. Most on Twitterverse are wondering why Robison hasn't been ejected.
4:26: Just handed First Quarter Summary. Best stat: Michael Jenkins, 1 REC/72 YDS.
4:29: AP ignites crowd with 29-yard scamper with 1:52 left in first half.
4:31: Ponder sacked for the first time, brings up third and 13, but Vikes fail to convert.
4:33: VIKINGS 17, PACKERS 10 -- Vikes up by a touchdown on 52-yard Ryan Longwell FG.
4:40: VIKINGS 17, PACKERS 13 -- Mason Crosby hits 45-yard FG as time expires in half.
4:49: Best tweet so far, from Paul Charchian: "Considering the opponent, injuries, and jailings, was THIS the best first half of football from the Vikings this year?" Answer: Yes.
4:49: In case you were wondering: Vikings' foam finger ("We're No. 1), only $10, in the hallway.
4:57: PACKERS 20, VIKINGS 17 -- Rodgers hits Greg Jennings for 79-yard strike for TD. Jennings walks the last 30 yards.
5:08: PACKERS 27, VIKINGS 17 -- Rodgers hits Jermichael Finley in the end zone from 2 yards out. Pack suddenly up by 10.
5:10: Nice tweet from Strib's Michael Rand: "Christian Ponder, better than advertised. Vikings secondary, worse than advertised. Vikings second half, just as advertised."
5:16: Charles Woodson intercepts Ponder at the 45-yard-line. Game. Slipping. Out. Of. Control.
5:23: PACKERS 30, VIKINGS 17 -- Another Crosby FG puts Pack up by 13.
5:28: After huge AP run, Woodson picks off another Ponder pass and returns it to the Vikings' 35.
5:32: PACKERS 33, VIKINGS 17 -- Mason Crosby crushes one for a 58-yard field goal.
5:35: Adrian Peterson rushes for 54-yards as the third quarter comes to an end.
5:39: PACKERS 33, VIKINGS 20 -- Longwell makes it a two-possession game with a 46-yard FG.
5:46: Just handed Third Quarter Summary. Eye-opening stat: Ponder 0-5 passing, 2 INTs. Rodgers 5-5 passing, 2 TDs.
5:58: PACKERS 33, VIKINGS 27 -- Ponder hits Michael Jenkins for 24-yard TD pass. Game not over yet.
6:02: Third-and-six for the Packers. Ear-splitting decibels inside dome. Pass incomplete. Brings up fourth down. Do Vikes have a chance? 5:26 to go. We will see.
6:06: Shiancoe clutch catch on third down. Packers fans getting nervous.
6:10: Camarillo clutch catch on third down. Has that sentence ever been typed?
6:11: Pass to Shiancoe on third down incomplete. Vikes punt, crowd boos.
6:16: Packers' James Starks gets a huge gain on the ground. Vikes out of time outs. This one looks over.
6:18: Tweet from Strib's Souhan: "Vikes D gives up two long runs in running situations...brutal, brutal defense. Run stopping used to be this team's strength."
6:20: Packers go into victory formation.
6:21: FINAL: PACKERS 33, VIKINGS 27