Carson Wentz got the best of Sam Bradford, Josh Huff returned a kickoff 98 yards to score a touchdown, and the Philadelphia Eagles went on to defeat the Minnesota Vikings 21-10, thus, giving the latter their very first loss of the season.
With the win, the Eagles (4-2) ended a two-game losing streak while the well-rested Vikings (5-1) barely looked like an undefeated team after coming off a bye week.
The meeting between the two teams on Sunday marked the first time that Sam Bradford returned to Philly since being traded to the Vikings eight days before the start of the season to help make way for Wentz to start. Bradford compiled a 7-7 record as the starting quarterback in his lone season with the Eagles and won his first four starts with Minnesota.
Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said that he was disappointed with his team’s performance and thought that they played “embarrassing in two phases.”
Potential problems in Minnesota’s offensive line were exposed as Philadelphia’s defense pressured and harassed Bradford all throughout the game. The former Eagle would get sacked six times during the contest and committed his first three turnovers of the season.
“I thought he missed some throws that he normally makes, but he got hit a lot,” Zimmer said. “It’s probably hard to evaluate his performance when the line looks like a sieve.”
Wentz also had some struggles early in the game, throwing two interceptions, but would later recover to help lead the Eagles to a couple of scoring drives which included a five-yard touchdown pass to Dorial Green-Beckham in the third quarter that gave them an 18-3 lead.
“That’s a great defense we played,” Wentz said. “I have to be smarter with the football. We found a way to win. That’s huge for us.”
Both teams combined for only three turnovers in the first 10 games, but they would have a pretty sloppy start on Sunday as they traded giveaways on five consecutive plays in the first quarter, and would end up with a total of eight turnovers. The Vikings were able to start two consecutive drives in the red zone but would blow both of their chances.
The Vikings would score the first three points of the game after Blair Walsh connected on a 48-yard field goal that put them up 3-0. The Eagles responded after Huff recorded the second touchdown return of his career. He sprinted on the right side of the field, blew past Walsh’s attempted arm tackle at the 40-yard-line, and would go all the way to the end zone untouched where he capped off his amazing return with a somersault. Wentz then ran the ball from the one-yard line for a two-point conversion, putting the Eagles up 8-3.
Bradford connected on 24-of-41 passes for 224 yards, one touchdown, and an interception. Matt Asiata rushed for 55 yards while Cordarrelle Peterson caught seven passes for 67 yards and a touchdown.
For the Eagles, Wentz went 16-of-28 for 138 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. Ryan Matthews ended with 56 rushing yards while Huff had four catches for 39 yards.
The Eagles also managed to put themselves in the record books on Sunday when they returned kickoffs for touchdowns in consecutive games for the first time in franchise history. Wendell Smallwood returned a kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown last week in a loss to the Washington Redskins. Huff recorded a 107-yard kickoff return for a touchdown during his rookie year in 2014.
Even with the loss, the Vikings are still the number one team in the NFC North and will look to return to their winning ways when they travel to Chicago to face the struggling Bears on November 1.
Philadelphia’s next game will be against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on October 31.
[Featured Image by Michael Perez/AP Images]