Locker room reaction following Vikings loss at Philadelphia
Two losses in five days already puts the Minnesota Vikings in a big hole that’s been difficult for NFL teams to overcome.
Since 1990, only 31 of the 270 clubs (11.5%) that began a season 0-2 advanced to the playoffs. The Cincinnati Bengals recovered from losing their first two games last season to finish 12-4 and reached the AFC championship game.
The Vikings have to buck the losing trend after another sloppy effort in a 34-28 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday night.
5 EYEWITNESS NEWS sports reporter Alec Ausmus traveled to Philadelphia for Thursday night’s matchup, click the video play above to watch his recap of the game.
They had four costly fumbles, including Justin Jefferson losing the ball out of bounds in the end zone. That followed up a mistake-filled 20-17 loss at home to Tampa Bay in Week 1.
“Shot ourselves in the foot with the turnovers,” quarterback Kirk Cousins said. “Similar story now the first two weeks in that case. … Just difficult to win in this league when you lose the turnover battle by one, let alone by the margin we have lost it by, so we have to fix those mistakes and not let it continue.”
All-star wide receiver Justin Jefferson shouldered some of the blame himself, especially with the touchback.
“I’m putting a lot of the blame on myself,” Jefferson said, adding, “Being a captain of the team I have to know the situation, take care of the ball. I was telling my teammates, that one was on me.”
Linebacker Jordan Hicks acknowledged the Eagles run game and ball control played a factor in Thursday’s loss. The Eagles had ball possession for just nearly 19 more minutes than the Vikings throughout the game.
“Week in and week out if you don’t stop the run you’re not going to be successful,” Hicks stated. “We did a lot of good things, it’s the second week of saying that, we did a lot of good things but there are some obvious things to clean up, the rushing part being number one.”
Six other 2022 playoff teams are in danger of starting 0-2, including the AFC’s top three teams last year. The Kansas City Chiefs, Bengals and Buffalo Bills each lost their season opener. So did the Los Angeles Chargers, New York Giants and Seattle Seahawks.
Only the 1993 Dallas Cowboys, 2001 New England Patriots and 2007 New York Giants won a Super Bowl after starting 0-2.
***Click the video box below to watch postgame reaction from LB Jordan Hicks, TE TJ Hockenson, S Josh Metellus, WR Justin Jefferson, and LB Danielle Hunter***