The Detroit Lions' defense had no answer for the Vikings' offense Sunday as the Vikings racked up yards on the ground and through the air in a 34-20 win Sunday in Minnesota. The loss drops the Lions' record to 3-5 on the year.
Vikings running back Dalvin Cook rushed for 206 yards and two scores, quarterback Kirk Cousins threw for three scores, and Minnesota put up 487 total yards, well above their season average (367.0).
Detroit threw two costly interceptions in the Vikings' red zone and missed a field goal, which ended up costing them in this one.
Minnesota rushed for 275 yards in the game. It's the second time this season the Lions have allowed more than 200 rushing yards in a game. They gave up 259 yards on the ground to the Packers in a Week 2, 42-21, lopsided loss. Detroit came in allowing 130.0 yards on the ground on average per contest this season, but had been much better since the Week 5 bye, holding two of their last three opponents under 100 rushing yards. Sunday was a step backward in that department.
QB Comparison: Matthew Stafford had an up and down game before leaving in the fourth quarter to be evaluated for a concussion. He had a stretch of 16-straight completions early on, and finished 23-of-32 passing for 211 yards with a touchdown to Jones and two costly interceptions. He finished with a 73.8 passer rating.
Veteran Chase Daniel replaced Stafford and completed eight of his 13 passes for 94 yards with a short touchdown pass to Hockenson and an interception. He had a 77.1 rating.
Cousins was pretty efficient for the Vikings, which is easy to do when an offense is going as good as the Vikings were on the ground. Cousins was 13-of-20 passing for 220 yards with three touchdowns and no turnovers. He finished with a terrific 141.7 passer rating.
Promising trend: The Lions blocked their first punt in 13 years last week against the Colts, and blocked two more Sunday against the Vikings. Miles Killebrew got the one last week. Defensive ends Austin Bryant and Romeo Okwara got their hands on punts for the Lions Sunday. The Okwara block led to the Hockenson touchdown.
Lions punting and kick coverage continues to be a real positive on special teams this season.
Worrisome trend: Cousins really likes seeing the Lions on the schedule.
Coming into Sunday, Cousins was 4-0 vs. the Lions as quarterback for the Vikings with nine touchdowns and just one interception.
It was more of the same for Cousins in his first game against the Lions this season. He threw three touchdowns with no turnovers and is now 5-0 against the Lions with 12 touchdowns and one interception as the Vikings' signal caller.
Injury report: Stafford left the game early in the fourth quarter and was being evaluated for a concussion. He never returned to the game.
Cornerback and key special teams contributor Tony McRae injured his right knee in the second quarter and had to be carted off the field. He also did not return.
One other injury of note for the Lions: Rookie cornerback Jeff Okudah left the game due to an ankle injury and did not return.
Next week: vs. Washington (2-6).