This week was extra hard writing the player of the game article, given how hot the Vikings started off, and then just fizzled offensively after the first quarter and couldn’t do anything for the rest of the game.
Teddy Bridgewater: Despite throwing two interceptions, Teddy had some respectable stats for the day. He completed 31/41 attempts (75.6%) for 315 yards and a touchdown. Granted, both interceptions were bad throws, one of them still required a very good play by Detroit’s secondary in order to reel in the turnover. However, Teddy was not able to get the team into the endzone for the final 3 quarters of the game.
Greg Jennings: The only offensive player that seems deserving of consideration is Jennings, who while only catching 3 passes, they went for 43 yards (14.3 avg) and a TD. Also, one of them was another great toe-tapper on the sideline for a long first down that was confirmed after Detroit challenged.
Gerold Hodges: Filling in for an injured Anthony Barr for the second week in a row, Hodges had another very good performance. No turnovers this week, but he led a very good defensive unit in tackles with 9, and added 2 pass deflections to those numbers. His performance in these last two games is going to make off-season decisions for the LB corps very interesting.
Xavier Rhodes: Following Megatron around the field, whether he lined up left or right on most snaps, Rhodes had another great day. Megatron only was able to get open 4 times for 53 yards – pretty mediocre numbers for the same guy who owns the record for most receiving yards in a single season. A bit out of character this week, Rhodes was unable to notch any pass deflections, but he did get in 3 tackles, including one for a loss.
Harrison Smith & Andrew Sendejo: No offense to either of these two, but given how things played out in Detroit, it seems fair to group them together in the vote for this week. As the starting safeties in the game, they both got 6 tackles (2nd most behind Hodges), and undoubtedly deserve much of the credit for holding the Lions out of the endzone for the entire game, save for the one drive that started inside the redzone after Teddy’s first interception.
Cordarrelle Patterson: He’s been hard to find this season, but the Flash came close to getting us the win at the end of the game. With 2 kick returns, he notched 74-yards, including the 51-yarder setting up the last drive. With the game on the line and Wright injured, Patterson came in and caught 2 passes for 16 yards as well. So he was able to make the most of his opportunities this week, even though they were very limited.
With no sacks, turnovers, or other huge performances, it’s hard to justify putting any one else on this list, even though the defense as a whole put up a great performance, keeping the score extra low even with a 2-turnover deficit. Once we are able to get an offense capable of scoring back on the field, this team is going to be scary good.