|2008 Minnesota Vikings season|
|Head Coach||Brad Childress|
|Home Field||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome|
|Place||1st NFC North|
|Playoff Finish||Lost NFC Wild Card Playoff |
|Previous season||Next season|
The 2008 season was the Minnesota Vikings' 48th in the NFL and their third under head coach Brad Childress. They won their 17th NFC North title with a 10–6 record, the first time since 2000 that they made the playoffs and finished with a winning record, but had to play in the wild card round of the playoffs, where they were paired with Childress's former team, the Philadelphia Eagles, who ended the Vikings' season with a 26–14 win. Second-year running back Adrian Peterson led the league in rushing with 1,760 yards.
Player and personnel moves
Releases and injuries
On February 11, it was announced that defensive end Kenechi Udeze had been diagnosed by doctors with a form of leukemia. KMSP-TV (Ch. 9) also reported that Udeze was at Fairview Southdale Hospital undergoing tests and that he had been at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester the week before. Udeze was expected to be out for the 2008 season, but returned for one game against the Green Bay Packers on November 9 before ultimately retiring from professional football on July 29, 2009.
On February 20, the team released free safety Dwight Smith after two somewhat controversial seasons with the Vikings in which Smith had several run-ins with the law. He was due to receive $2.5 million and a $500,000 roster bonus this season.
On February 29, the team traded wide receiver Troy Williamson to the Jacksonville Jaguars for a sixth-round pick in the 2008 draft  and linebacker Dontarrious Thomas left the team to join the San Francisco 49ers.
Signings and extensions
On March 24, restricted free agent linebacker Heath Farwell was re-resigned to a one-year contract. Also, on the next day, the team signed former Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Benny Sapp to a one-year contract.
On April 23, Kansas City Chiefs defensive end Jared Allen signed a six-year contract with the Vikings in a trade that gave the Chiefs the Vikings' 2008 first-round draft pick and both third-round picks. The trade may also involve the swapping of 2008 sixth round draft picks with Kansas City.
On July 22, the Vikings signed their fifth-round pick, DT Letroy Guion, and their seventh-round pick WR Jaymar Johnson.
|2008 Minnesota Vikings Draft|
|Draft order||Player name||Position||College||Contract||Notes|
|1||17||17||Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs[a]|
|2||12||43||Tyrell Johnson||S||Arkansas State||4 years||from Panthers via Eagles[b]|
|16||47||Traded to the Philadelphia Eagles[b]|
|3||10||73||Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs[a]||from Broncos[c]|
|19||82||Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs[a]|
|4||18||117||Traded to the Philadelphia Eagles[b]|
|5||2||137||John David Booty||QB||USC||4 years||From Rams via Packers[d]|
|15||150||Traded to the Green Bay Packers[d]|
|17||152||Letroy Guion||DT||Florida State||4 years||from Eagles[b]|
|6||16||182||Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs[a]|
|21||187||John Sullivan||C||Notre Dame||4 years||from Buccaneers via Chiefs[a]|
|27||193||Jaymar Johnson||WR||Jackson State||4 years||from Jaguars[e]|
|7||2||209||Traded to the Green Bay Packers[d]||from Rams[f]|
|19||226||Traded to the New York Jets[g]|
- ^[a] Minnesota traded their first-round selection (17th overall), two third-round selections (73rd[c] and 82nd overall), and their sixth-round selection (182nd overall) to Kansas City in exchange for DE Jared Allen and a sixth-round selection (187th overall).
- ^[b] Minnesota traded their second-round selections (47th overall) and their fourth-round selection (117th overall) to Philadelphia for a fifth-round selection (152nd overall) and to move up four spots to the 43rd selection and make this pick.
- ^[c] During the 2007 Draft, Denver traded their 2007 sixth-round selection (176th overall—Rufus Alexander), 2007 seventh-round selection (233rd overall—Chandler Williams), and 2008 third-round selection (73rd overall) to Minnesota for their 2007 fourth-round selection (121st overall—Marcus Thomas).
- ^[d] Minnesota traded their fifth-round selections (150th overall) and a seventh-round selection (209th overall) to Green Bay to move up 13 spots to the 137th selection and make this pick.
- ^[e] Jacksonville traded their sixth-round selection (193rd overall) to Minnesota in exchange for WR Troy Williamson.
- ^[f] St. Louis traded their seventh-round selection (209th overall) to Minnesota in exchange for OT Adam Goldberg.
- ^[g] Minnesota traded their seventh-round selection (226th overall) and DT C.J. Mosley to the Jets for QB Brooks Bollinger.
Undrafted free agents
|Husain Abdullah||S||Washington State|
|Leger Douzable||DT||Central Florida|
|Steven Hauschka||K||NC State|
|Jeremy "J" Leman||LB||Illinois|
|Darius Reynaud||WR||West Virginia|
|Brandon Sumrall||CB||S Mississippi|
|Kyle Wright||QB||Miami (Fla.)|
On July 16, a report by Jay Glazer appeared on FoxSports.com stating that the Green Bay Packers had filed tampering charges against the Vikings for allegedly inappropriately contacting Green Bay quarterback Brett Favre.
|1||August 8||Seattle Seahawks||L 17–34||0–1||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|2||August 16||at Baltimore Ravens||W 23–15||1–1||M&T Bank Stadium||Recap|
|3||August 23||Pittsburgh Steelers||L 10–12||1–2||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|4||August 28||at Dallas Cowboys||L 10–16||1–3||Texas Stadium||Recap|
Week 1: vs. Seattle Seahawks
Preseason Week 1: Seattle Seahawks at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Week 2: at Baltimore Ravens
Preseason Week 2: Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens – Game summary|
Week 3: vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Preseason Week 3: Pittsburgh Steelers at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Week 4: at Dallas Cowboys
Preseason Week 4: Minnesota Vikings at Dallas Cowboys – Game summary|
|1||September 8||at Green Bay Packers||L 19–24||0–1||Lambeau Field||Recap|
|2||September 14||Indianapolis Colts||L 15–18||0–2||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|3||September 21||Carolina Panthers||W 20–10||1–2||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|4||September 28||at Tennessee Titans||L 17–30||1–3||LP Field||Recap|
|5||October 6||at New Orleans Saints||W 30–27||2–3||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|6||October 12||Detroit Lions||W 12–10||3–3||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|7||October 19||at Chicago Bears||L 41–48||3–4||Soldier Field||Recap|
|9||November 2||Houston Texans||W 28–21||4–4||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|10||November 9||Green Bay Packers||W 28–27||5–4||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|11||November 16||at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||L 13–19||5–5||Raymond James Stadium||Recap|
|12||November 23||at Jacksonville Jaguars||W 30–12||6–5||Jacksonville Municipal Stadium||Recap|
|13||November 30||Chicago Bears||W 34–14||7–5||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|14||December 7||at Detroit Lions||W 20–16||8–5||Ford Field||Recap|
|15||December 14||at Arizona Cardinals||W 35–14||9–5||University of Phoenix Stadium||Recap|
|16||December 21||Atlanta Falcons||L 17–24||9–6||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
|17||December 28||New York Giants||W 20–19||10–6||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
- The Vikings ranked fourth in the NFL in strength of schedule this season
Week 1: at Green Bay Packers
Week 1: Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers – Game summary|
The Vikings began their 2008 campaign on the road against their NFC North foe, the Green Bay Packers, in the first game of 2008's Monday Night Football doubleheader. After a scoreless first quarter, the Vikings attacked first with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 37-yard field goal. The Packers responded with QB Aaron Rodgers completing a 1-yard TD pass to FB Korey Hall, along with kicker Mason Crosby getting a 42-yard field goal. In the third quarter, the Vikes tried to catch up as Longwell got a 27-yard field goal, but Green Bay replied with CB/PR Will Blackmon returning a punt 76 yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, Minnesota tried to rally as QB Tarvaris Jackson completed a 23-yard TD pass to WR Sidney Rice (with a failed 2-point conversion), yet the Packers responded with Rodgers getting a 1-yard TD run. The Vikes would reply with RB Adrian Peterson getting a 3-yard TD run, but their final rally ended in an interception.
With the loss, not only did the Vikings begin their season at 0–1, but Head Coach Brad Childress fell to 0–5 against the Packers in his coaching career. In the first half, Minnesota was widely outgained in passing yards 139–6.
Week 2: vs. Indianapolis Colts
Week 2: Indianapolis Colts at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Hoping to rebound from their divisional road loss to the Packers, the Vikings played their Week 2 home opener against the Indianapolis Colts. In the first half, kicker Ryan Longwell helped Minnesota take the early lead with a 45-yard and a 27-yard field goal in the first quarter, along with a 53-yard field goal in the second quarter. In the third quarter, the Vikes increased its lead with Longwell getting a 46-yard and a 28-yard field goal. However, the Colts responded with RB Joseph Addai getting a 1-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, Indianapolis continued to gain ground as QB Peyton Manning completed a 32-yard TD pass to WR Reggie Wayne, followed by a two-point conversion run by RB Dominic Rhodes. Later, the Colts sealed the win with kicker Adam Vinatieri nailing the game-winning 47-yard field goal.
With the loss, the Vikings fell to 0–2.
Week 3: vs. Carolina Panthers
Week 3: Carolina Panthers at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
In the first quarter, Minnesota trailed early as Panthers kicker John Kasay got a 43-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Carolina increased its lead with RB Jonathan Stewart getting a 2-yard TD run. The Vikes would respond with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 28-yard field goal, along with CB Antoine Winfield sacking Panthers QB Jake Delhomme, fumbling the ball, and Winfield returning that fumble 19-yards for a touchdown just before halftime, the key play in the Viking victory. Head coach Brad Childress said a day later that Winfield had a half-second left before it was ruled an incomplete pass. In the third quarter, the Vikings got the lead as Frerotte completed a 34-yard TD pass to TE Visanthe Shiancoe. In the fourth quarter, Minnesota sealed its victory with Longwell nailing a 32-yard field goal.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 1–2.
Week 4: at Tennessee Titans
Week 4: Minnesota Vikings at Tennessee Titans – Game summary|
Coming off their home win over the Panthers, the Vikings flew to LP Field for a Week 4 interconference duel with the Tennessee Titans. In the first quarter, Minnesota trailed early as Titans kicker Rob Bironas got a 20-yard field goal, while RB Chris Johnson got a 1-yard TD run. In the second quarter, the Vikes responded with RB Adrian Peterson getting a 28-yard TD run. However, Tennessee responded with Bironas kicking a 32-yard field goal, along with RB LenDale White getting a 1-yard TD run. The Vikings closed out the half with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 42-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Titans increased their lead with Bironas nailing a 49-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Minnesota tried to rally as Peterson got a 3-yard TD run, but Tennessee pulled away with Johnson's 6-yard TD run.
With the loss, the Vikings fell to 1–3.
Week 5: at New Orleans Saints
Week 5: Minnesota Vikings at New Orleans Saints – Game summary|
Hoping to rebound from their road loss to the Titans, the Vikings flew to the Louisiana Superdome for a Week 5 Monday Night duel with the New Orleans Saints. In the game, QB Gus Frerotte was making his first MNF start since 1997 (when he was with the Washington Redskins).
In the first quarter, the Vikes trailed early as Saints QB Drew Brees completed a 17-yard TD pass to WR Devery Henderson. Minnesota would respond with CB Antoine Winfield returning a blocked field goal 59 yards for a touchdown, the first (and longest) ever in franchise history. New Orleans would answer with kicker Martín Gramática getting a 35-yard field goal, yet the Vikings replied with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 53-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Vikes took the lead on a trick play as RB Chester Taylor completed a 4-yard TD pass to TE Visanthe Shiancoe, along with Longwell kicking a 33-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Saints began to rally as RB Reggie Bush returned a punt 71 yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, New Orleans took the lead with Gramática's 53-yard field goal and Bush's 64-yard punt return for a touchdown. Afterwards, Minnesota answered with Frerotte completing a 33-yard TD pass to WR Bernard Berrian, along with Longwell nailing the game-winning 30-yard field goal.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 2–3.
Antoine Winfield had a big game. In addition to his touchdown off of a blocked field goal, he had 8 tackles and a sack (with a forced fumble recovery).
This was also the first time in NFL history that a game had a combination of a blocked field goal, a TD pass by a non-quarterback, two field goals of 50+ yards, and two punts returned for touchdowns.
Week 6: vs. Detroit Lions
Week 6: Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming off their Monday night road win over the Saints, the Vikings went home for a Week 6 NFC North duel with the Detroit Lions. In the first quarter, the Vikes got an early lead as Lions QB Dan Orlovsky unintentionally ran out of the back of his own end zone, giving Minnesota a safety which Orlovsky didn't know why the whistles were blown. In the second quarter, Detroit got the lead as kicker Jason Hanson got a 40-yard field goal. In the third quarter, the Lions increased their lead as Orlovsky completed a 12-yard TD pass to WR Calvin Johnson. The Vikings answered with QB Gus Frerotte completing an 86-yard TD pass to WR Bernard Berrian. In the end of the fourth quarter, the Vikes got in field goal range due to a controversial pass interference call on Leigh Bodden. The Vikes sealed the win with kicker Ryan Longwell nailing the game-winning 26-yard field goal.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 3–3.
Week 7: at Chicago Bears
Week 7: Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears – Game summary|
Coming off their divisional home win over the Lions, the Vikings flew to Soldier Field for a Week 7 NFC North duel with the Chicago Bears. In the first quarter, the Vikes drew first blood as RB Adrian Peterson got a 1-yard TD run. The Bears would respond with QB Kyle Orton completing an 18-yard TD pass to TE Greg Olsen, along with RB Garrett Wolfe returning a blocked punt 17 yards for a touchdown. Minnesota would respond with QB Gus Frerotte completing a 24-yard TD pass to TE Visanthe Shiancoe. In the second quarter, it would be back and forth. Chicago kicker Robbie Gould would get a 26-yard field goal, while Vikings kicker Ryan Longwell got a 42-yard field goal. Bears CB Zack Bowman would recover a fumble in Minnesota's endzone for a touchdown, while Vikings RB Chester Taylor got a 1-yard TD run. Chicago would close out the half as Gould got a 48-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Bears got the lead again as WR Rashied Davis recovered a fumble within Minnesota's endzone for a touchdown. The Vikes would reply as Peterson got a 54-yard TD run. Chicago would then strike again as Orton completed a 51-yard TD pass to WR Marty Booker. In the fourth quarter, the Bears struck again as RB Matt Forte got a 1-yard TD run. Minnesota tried to rally as Longwell nailed a 23-yard field goal, along with Frerotte completing a 5-yard TD pass to WR Bernard Berrian. However, Chicago's defense stepped up and prevented the Vikes from tying the game.
With the loss, the Vikings went into their bye week at 3–4.
The 89 combined points became the highest single-game scoring total in the history of the Vikes/Bears rivalry.
Week 9: vs. Houston Texans
Week 9: Houston Texans at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming off their bye week, the Vikings played a Week 9 interconference duel at home against the Houston Texans. In the first quarter, the Vikes drew first blood as RB Adrian Peterson got a 1-yard TD run. The Texans responded with CB Jacques Reeves returning an interception 44 yards for a touchdown. In the second quarter, Minnesota responded with QB Gus Frerotte completing an 8-yard TD pass to WR Sidney Rice and a 49-yard TD pass to WR Bernard Berrian.
In the third quarter, Houston started to rally as QB Sage Rosenfels completed a 3-yard TD pass to WR David Anderson. In the fourth quarter, the Vikings answered with Frerotte completing a 25-yard TD pass to TE Visanthe Shiancoe. The Texans tried to come back as Rosenfels completed a 14-yard TD pass to WR Andre Johnson. Fortunately, Minnesota's defense stiffened for the victory.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 4–4.
Week 10: vs. Green Bay Packers
Week 10: Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming off their win over the Texans, the Vikings stayed at home for a Week 10 NFC North rematch with the Green Bay Packers. In the first quarter, the Vikes drew first blood as QB Gus Frerotte completed a 3-yard TD pass to WR Sidney Rice. The Packers would respond with RB Ryan Grant getting a 1-yard TD run. In the second quarter, Minnesota increased their lead with kicker Ryan Longwell (former Packer) getting a 54-yard field goal, along with the Vikings picking up back-to-back safeties. The first one came when QB Aaron Rodgers committed intentional grounding in his own endzone, with the second one coming from DE Jared Allen sacking Rodgers in his own endzone. Green Bay would close out the half with kicker Mason Crosby getting a 47-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Vikes increased their lead as Frerotte completed a 47-yard TD pass to RB Chester Taylor. However, the Packers took the lead as safety Nick Collins returned an interception 59 yards for a touchdown, along with CB/KR Will Blackmon returning a punt 65 yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, the Packers increased their lead as Crosby nailed a 40-yard field goal. The Vikings regained the lead as RB Adrian Peterson got a 29-yard TD run. Green Bay did manage to get a late drive going, yet Crosby's 52-yard field goal attempt sailed wide right, preserving head coach Brad Childress' first win over the Packers.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 5–4.
Week 11: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Week 11: Minnesota Vikings at Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Game summary|
Coming off their divisional home win over the Packers, the Vikings flew to Raymond James Stadium for a Week 11 duel with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the first quarter, the Vikings struck first as kicker Ryan Longwell got a 43-yard field goal. The Buccaneers responded with kicker Matt Bryant getting a 39-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Minnesota answered with QB Gus Frerotte completing a 4-yard TD pass to WR Bobby Wade. Tampa Bay would reply with Bryant making a 26-yard field goal. The Vikings closed out the half with Longwell getting a 26-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Buccaneers tied the game with FB B. J. Askew getting a 1-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, Tampa Bay took the lead as Bryant nailed a 29-yard and a 26-yard field goal. Minnesota tried to rally, but the Buccaneers' defense was too much to overcome.
With the loss, the Vikings fell to 5–5.
Week 12: at Jacksonville Jaguars
Week 12: Minnesota Vikings at Jacksonville Jaguars – Game summary|
Hoping to rebound from their road loss to the Buccaneers, the Vikings flew to Jacksonville Municipal Stadium for a Week 12 interconference duel with the Jacksonville Jaguars. In the first quarter, the Vikes got off to a fast start as LB Napoleon Harris returned a fumble 27 yards for a touchdown, while RB Chester Taylor got a 3-yard TD run. The Jaguars would respond with QB David Garrard completing an 8-yard TD pass to WR Reggie Williams. Minnesota would answer with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 54-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Jacksonville would get the period's only points as kicker Josh Scobee made a 21-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Vikings replied with Longwell making a 32-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Minnesota pulled away as Longwell nailed a 22-yard field goal, while RB Adrian Peterson got a 16-yard TD run. Afterwards, the Jaguars were given a safety when Vikings punter Chris Kluwe ran out of the back of his endzone.
With the win, Minnesota improved to 6–5.
Week 13: vs. Chicago Bears
Week 13: Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming off their road win over the Jaguars, the Vikings went home, donned their throwback uniforms, and played a Week 13 NFC North rematch with the Chicago Bears, with first place in the division on the line. In the first quarter, Chicago would strike first with QB Kyle Orton completing a 65-yard TD pass to WR Devin Hester. The Vikings would answer back in the second quarter with kicker Ryan Longwell getting a 23-yard field goal. Later in the quarter, the Vikings defense would come up big with a goal line stand. DE Jared Allen made the key tackle just an inch short of the end zone on fourth-and-goal. On the very next play, QB Gus Frerotte ran a play action fake from his own endzone and found former Bears WR Bernard Berrian for a 99-yard touchdown pass. This tied an NFL record for the longest pass from scrimmage and it was the first-ever longest offensive touchdown play in franchise history. It was also the eleventh time in NFL history that a 99-yard play was made. Then, with 1:09 left until halftime, Frerotte found TE Jim Kleinsasser for a 21-yard gain to just inside the one-yard line. The play was originally ruled a touchdown, but was officially reviewed and it was determined that he was just short of the goal line. On the next play however, Frerotte got the touchdown on a 1-yard quarterback sneak with 44 seconds left until the half.
In the third quarter, both teams traded blows. The Bears would answer with Orton completing a 2-yard TD pass to RB Matt Forté, while Minnesota answered with RB Chester Taylor getting a 21-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, the Vikes pulled away as RB Adrian Peterson got a 1-yard TD run, while Longwell nailed a 27-yard field goal.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 7–5 and took first place in the NFC North for the first time since early in the 2007 season.
Week 14: at Detroit Lions
Week 14: Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions – Game summary|
Fresh off their divisional home win over the Bears on Sunday night, the Vikings flew to Ford Field for a Week 14 NFC North rematch with the winless Detroit Lions. Late in the first quarter, Minnesota would trail as Lions kicker Jason Hanson got a 25-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Detroit increased its lead as Hanson got a 23-yard field goal. The Vikings closed out the half with a 35-yard field goal from kicker Ryan Longwell.
In the third quarter, Minnesota would take the lead as RB Chester Taylor got a 17-yard TD run. The Lions would reply with QB Daunte Culpepper (a former Viking) completing a 70-yard TD pass to wide receiver Calvin Johnson. In the fourth quarter, the Vikings regained the lead as QB Tarvaris Jackson completed an 11-yard TD pass to TE Visanthe Shiancoe. Detroit tried to rally as Hanson nailed a 39-yard field goal, yet Longwell helped Minnesota pull away with a 50-yard field goal, his fifth 50+ yarder of the season.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 8–5.
Week 15: at Arizona Cardinals
Week 15: Minnesota Vikings at Arizona Cardinals – Game summary|
Coming off their hotly contested road win over the Lions, the Vikings flew to the desert for a Week 15 duel with the newly crowned NFC West champion Arizona Cardinals. Early in the first quarter, the Vikings got on the board first with a punt returned 82 yards by WR/PR Bernard Berrian for a touchdown. Later in the first quarter, the Vikings increased their lead with QB Tarvaris Jackson completing a 41-yard TD pass to Berrian. The Vikings closed out the first quarter with Jackson completing a 6-yard TD pass to WR Sidney Rice. In the second quarter, the Vikings increased their lead with Jackson completing an 11-yard TD pass to RB Chester Taylor for the only score of the period.
In the third quarter, Arizona tried to rally as QB Kurt Warner completed a 50-yard TD pass to WR Jerheme Urban. Later in the quarter, the Vikings tried to put the game away with a 34-yard field goal by kicker Ryan Longwell, only to have it blocked and Arizona returning it 62 yards for a touchdown by CB Roderick Hood. Finally, the Vikings put the game away for good with Jackson completing a 59-yard TD pass to WR Bobby Wade. Arizona tried to rally in the final minutes of the game, but on first-and-goal, they ran out of time.
With the win, the Vikings improved to 9–5 and to a one-game lead over the Bears in the NFC North. If the Vikings won in week 16 against Atlanta or Chicago lost against Green Bay, the Vikings would clinch their 17th division title, and their first since 2000.
Week 16 vs. Atlanta Falcons
Week 16: Atlanta Falcons at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming off their road rout of the Cardinals, the Vikings went home for a Week 16 battle with the Atlanta Falcons; a win would give the Vikings their first division title since 2000, and their first NFC North title. Minnesota trailed early in the first quarter as Falcons running back Michael Turner got a 1-yard touchdown run. The Vikings would respond with quarterback Tarvaris Jackson completing a 21-yard touchdown pass to tight end Visanthe Shiancoe. However, Atlanta would answer in the second quarter with quarterback Matt Ryan completing an 8-yard touchdown pass to running back Jerious Norwood, followed by kicker Jason Elam's 22-yard field goal.
The Falcons would further increase their lead in the third quarter as offensive guard Justin Blalock recovered Ryan's fumble in the endzone for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, Minnesota tried to rally as kicker Ryan Longwell nailed a 29-yard field goal, followed by Jackson's 17-yard touchdown pass to Shiancoe. However, Atlanta's defense prevented any further comeback from happening.
With the loss, the Vikings fell to 9–6.
Week 17 vs. New York Giants
Week 17: New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Coming into their final game of the season against the New York Giants, the Vikings needed a win or a Chicago Bears loss to clinch the NFC North division title. The scoring began early in the second quarter when Ryan Longwell kicked a 48-yard field goal. The Vikings continued the scoring with a 67-yard run by Adrian Peterson, the second longest of his career thus far. The Giants responded with a 51-yard John Carney field goal. The Giants continued the scoring with two John Carney field goals from 30 and 42 yards respectively to round out the end of the second quarter.
In the third quarter, the Giants took the lead when David Carr threw a 23-yard pass to Domenik Hixon, then added a 20-yard John Carney field goal early in the fourth quarter, making for a Giants nine-point lead. The Vikings came back with a 54-yard pass from Tarvaris Jackson to Bernard Berrian and clinched the win when Ryan Longwell nailed a 51-yard, game-winning field goal as time expired.
With the victory, the Vikings finished the regular season at 10–6, winning their first division title since 2000 and earning their first playoff berth since 2004.
|y (3) Minnesota Vikings||10||6||0||.625||4–2||8–4||379||333||W1|
|Green Bay Packers||6||10||0||.375||4–2||5–7||419||380||W1|
|WC||January 4||Philadelphia Eagles||L 14–26||0–1||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Recap|
NFC Wildcard Round: vs. Philadelphia Eagles
NFC Wildcard Round: Philadelphia Eagles at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary|
Entering the postseason as the NFC's third seed, the Vikings began their playoff run at home against the No. 6 Philadelphia Eagles and for the first time in eight years, the Vikings hosted a playoff game. Minnesota would trail early as Eagles kicker David Akers got a 43-yard and a 51-yard field goal. The Vikings would respond in the second quarter as running back Adrian Peterson got a 40-yard touchdown run. However, Philadelphia would answer with Akers' 31-yard field goal, followed by cornerback Asante Samuel's 44-yard interception return for a touchdown. Minnesota would end the half with Peterson's 3-yard touchdown run.
After a scoreless third quarter, the Eagles would increase their lead in the fourth quarter with quarterback Donovan McNabb's 71-yard touchdown pass to running back Brian Westbrook, followed by an Akers 45-yard field goal. Try as they might, the Vikings were unable to build any momentum to mount a rally.
With the loss, the Vikings' season ended with an overall record of 10–7.
|Passing yards||Gus Frerotte||2,157|
|Passing touchdowns||Gus Frerotte||12|
|Rushing yards||Adrian Peterson||1,760|
|Rushing touchdowns||Adrian Peterson||10|
|Receiving yards||Bernard Berrian||964|
|Receiving touchdowns||Bernard Berrian
|Kickoff return yards||Maurice Hicks||690|
|Punt return yards||Bernard Berrian||114|
|Forced fumbles||Antoine Winfield
|Category||Total yards||Yards per game||NFL rank|
(out of 32)
|Minnesota Vikings 2008 staff|
Special Teams Coaches
Strength and Conditioning
|2008 Minnesota Vikings roster|
- "Reports: Vikings' Udeze has leukemia". Star Tribune. http://www.startribune.com/sports/vikings/15534342.html. Retrieved February 12, 2008.[dead link]
- Seeholzer, Don (February 20, 2008). "Cutting Smith leaves Vikings thin at safety". Twin Cities Pioneer Press. http://www.twincities.com/2008/02/20/cutting-smith-leaves-vikings-thin-at-safety/.
- "Vikings Release Holcomb". http://sfo.scout.com/a.z?s=69&p=2&c=732639.
- "Troy Williamson traded to Jaguars". Reuters. February 29, 2008. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-nfl-jaguars-williamson-idUSN2922794220080229.
- "NFL Teams". http://www.nfl.com/teams/sanfrancisco49ers/transactions?transactionWeek=03%252F02%252F2008&team=SF.
- "NFL Teams". http://www.nfl.com/teams/buffalobills/transactions?transactionWeek=03%252F02%252F2008&team=BUF.
- Brown, Scott. "Steelers sign RB Mewelde Moore to a three-year contract.". http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/breaking/s_555322.html.
- "Fullback Richardson Goes To Jets". http://gnb.scout.com/a.z?s=61&p=2&c=735139.
- "Vikes Woo Berrian, Add Fullback, Safety". Associated Press. http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gS4OgGWqjnvsZyCXugTUHL6B3XLwD8V45HR81.[dead link]
- "The Official Site of the Minnesota Vikings". http://www.vikings.com/NewsArticle_BerrianSigns_030108.aspx.
- "Vikings sign ex-49ers RB/KR Maurice Hicks to 3-year contract". https://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/2008-03-04-1999809113_x.htm.
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- 2008 NFL Strength Of Schedule Archived April 16, 2008, at the Wayback Machine