Kirk Cousins and Justin Jefferson survived one of the wildest finishes in recent NFL history on Sunday afternoon.
It took a remarkable one-handed grab, an endzone fumble and a last-second interception, but the Minnesota Vikings defeated the Buffalo Bills 33-30 in overtime at Highmark Stadium in what should easily be considered the game of the season — if none current NFL memory.
Bills quarterback Josh Allen had a shot to earn the overtime win and was quickly marched into the red zone after Buffalo gave up a Vikings field goal. But Allen threw an interception straight to Vikings cornerback Patrick Peterson in the end zone, sealing the three-point win for Minnesota. It was Allen’s fourth red-zone interception in the past two weeks.
However, that finish was only part of a ridiculous finish that was rife with mistakes from Allen.
“Losing sucks. That’s even worse,” Allen said clearly after the game. via WKBW’s Matthew Bove. “Terrible second half. I need to get better. I have to get better… It’s on me. I can’t have that.”
Justin Jefferson sparks a wild fourth quarter
First, on a big fourth deficit late in the fourth quarter, Jefferson somehow pulled in a one-handed grab through Bill’s cornerback Cam Lewis.
Lewis also had two hands on the ball at this point, which made his catch all the more incredible.
The NFL tweeted multiple angles of the amazing catch:
Jefferson ended the day with 193 receiving yards and a touchdown on 10 catches.
However, the Vikings’ push didn’t quite make it into the end zone. Cousins’ quarterback sneak on the fourth down was scored inches, returning the ball to the Bills on the goal line.
Allen fumbles, throws INT in rough finish
Allen lost the ball in the first game at the goal line.
The fumble was quickly restored by Vikings linebacker Eric Kendricks for the touchdown, giving Minnesota the 30-27 lead.
Although Allen quickly put the Bills on the field with a 69-yard drive in five games to set up Tyler Bass’ game-defining field goal, it wasn’t enough in the end.
The Bills led 27-10 late in the third quarter and blew it. Allen’s end zone interception was his second in the game and fourth in two weeks. He ended the day with a 29/43 throw for 330 yards with a touchdown. He was also the Bills’ lead rusher with 84 yards on the ground.
The Bills are also only 2-9 in one-score games since the start of last season, despite their 16-1 record in games decided by more than one score. You just lost two now.
While Allen has been questionable all week with a right elbow injury, the Bills need him if they are to make the Super Bowl work, which many thought they would be capable of before the season. The Allen who showed up against the Vikings on Sunday – who had a lot to prove themselves – just won’t make it.
“I had his back no matter what the sh*t,” receiver Stefon Diggs said. via WGRZ. “My quarterback is trying really hard. At the end of the game you saw him leading us all the way across the field… He’ll hate it for 24 hours but I had his back. My quarterback is a winner.”