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Martin Races Past Vikings as Tampa Blows Out Minnesota 36-17

Coming off a short week and a win over the Cardinals, the Vikings did little right on Thursday night, and suddenly they appear once again to have major problems, falling to the Tampa Bay Bucs 36-17.

Their stout defense was shredded by Bucs rookie running back Doug Martin, who blistered the Vikings run D for 214 total yards, including a 64-yard screen pass for a score.

Josh Freeman threw three touchdown passes for Tampa Bay, which at one point had a commanding 27-10 lead 1:21 into the second half.

Martin, the first-round draft pick from Boise State, capped a drive of more than 9 minutes with a 1-yard muscle into the end zone midway through the fourth quarter to crush the comeback opportunity for the Vikings, who now fall to 5-3 on the season.

Adrian Peterson had a season-long 64-yard run for a score that brought the Vikings to 30-17, but his lost fumble in Minnesota territory in the second quarter led directly to a touchdown by the Buccaneers that put them up 20-7 when Freeman hit Mike Williams with a short TD.

Christian Ponder once again had a rough night, and was hit with a ton of blitzes. He wrapped up the night 19 for 35 for 251 yards, one touchdown and a late interception at the end of a desperation drive.

Freeman played well for Tampa, going 19 for 36 for 262 yards and did not turn the ball over. Williams had one of the touchdowns and 68 yards on six receptions, and the Bucs held the ball for nearly 38 of the 60 minutes.

The Vikings struggled early, as their first three possessions were all three-and-outs. Ponder began the game 0 for 5, Jerome Simpson lost a fumble after a short catch near midfield. The Bucs turned that into the second of Connor Barth’s three field goals and took a 13-0 lead.

Percy Harvin finally gave the Vikings some life by grabbing a screen pass for a 32-yard gain and then pivoting to haul in sideline pass over his shoulder for an 18-yard touchdown catch.

But Peterson, who was having no trouble reaching the Tampa Bay secondary with almost every run through the line, had the ball stripped after a spin move by veteran cornerback Ronde Barber. The Bucs got the ball at the Minnesota 37, and Williams made a tricky catch in the corner of the end zone for a 3-yard score and a 20-7 lead.

Peterson finished with 123 yards on 15 carries. Harvin had 90 yards on seven catches, but in the end, it was a long night for the Vikings, who have 10 days to think about this latest loss before heading to Seattle to play the Hawks.

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3 Responses to “Martin Races Past Vikings as Tampa Blows Out Minnesota 36-17”

  1. purplereign57 says:

    They are who I thought they were. A team still in the rebuilding process that is going to keep making costly mistakes. Even with Harrison Smith, the secondary still stinks. They have NO ONE on offense besides Percy Harvin and AP. That’s not enough. If you don’t have a good quarterback and some receiving talent that can get the job done, you’re not going to score enough points to win ball games. The 49’er game was a fluke. Minnesota has shown that they cannot play like that week in, week out. But a TEAM must play like they did against San Francisco to be competitive in the NFL. Christian Ponder ain’t cuttin’ it. A NFL quarterback MUST be better than he is right now for a team to be successful. Not putting it all on his head because he doesn’t have anyone to throw to besides Harvin. Play calling stinks too. Someone needs to bring in a breath of fresh air on that one. I really hate to say this, but the defense HAS TO play better… like they did against the 49’ers. And now with Chris Cook out, teams are gonna pick on that side…with success. They are going to get KILLED by the Bears and Packers later in the season. The Texans as well. That is unless some sort of miracle happens. I called the upset by Tampa Bay on Wednesday night, and my take on it is that the Vikings will do good to win three more games the rest of the season. But I really hope I’m wrong, because my hopes were higher than this for them when the season started. I hope I don’t make anyone here mad by my comments. I’m just callin’ ’em like I see ’em. I’ve bled purple for over forty years, and I just hope and pray that things turn around quickly up there, and Minnesota can salvage something out of their season. I just don’t know if they can get good enough in the second half of this season to make any sort of playoff run. Maybe next year.

  2. dynalee10 says:

    Those are honest and mostly accurate judgements . I think the issues with Ponder are magnified do to the ridiculously limited play list we have , if that doesn’t change other teams will stack the line to stop AD and then tighten coverage to stop that bubble screen to Percy and that leave the occasional throw to the tight end or wideout as our only play calls .

  3. why says:

    Vikings either need to get a wr or put in jarius wright that kid is fast and can catch unlike any other wr we have (except harvin). Vikes dont get a wr by trade deadline or try jarius 8-8 is the best they do.

    At least I didn’t hear the.nonsense here of putting in Joe Webb if he comes in we go 5-11

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