The Vikings win the coin toss and defer. Taysom Hill takes it out of the endzone to the 20. One Alvin Kamara 2 yard run play and two passes later the Saints gets their first, 1st down. Minnesota challenges the Michael Thomas completed catch. They lose both the challenge and a timeout. Mark Ingram runs for 1. Taysom Hill passes to Michael Thomas for 44 yards on an under thrown completion, A pass interference flag is declined. 1st and goal. Kamara takes it to the 3. On a three QB stunt play Taysom Hill picks up one yard. Kamara then takes it in on a short shuffle pass from Drew for the TD. Saints up 7-0.
On the ensuing kickoff the Vikings take it out to the 21 but a personal foul flag backs it up to the 9. Pass on first gets a 1st down. A run takes it out to the 6. Next Kirk Cousins pass is blocked, but a penalty by P.J. Williams gives them 5 yards and a 1st down. A holding call backs them up 5. Latavius Murray gets that back and more. Murray runs again for the 1st down. Next run stopped by Cam Jordan at the line of scrimmage. 2nd and 11 turns into 3rd and 5. Adam Thielen reaches over P.J. and catches for another 1st. A short run and it’s 2nd and 7. Next play Stefon Diggs once again victimizes P.J to the 2 yard line. On the second play from the goal Kyle Rudolph steps out and does not reestablish so the TD catch is negated. Next pass is too high. Then Diggs catches a TD on 4th and goal. 7 all.
Saints start at the 25. Dump offs to Kamara and then Ingram brings up 3rd and 14. Saints go 3 and out and punt.
Vikings punt return goes nowhere and they start at the 19. Adam Thielen picks up 14 on a 1st down run. Vikings pick up one which takes us to the 2nd quarter. Diggs picks up a 1st down. A flea flicker play burns P.J. again and they are in the Redzone. P.J. William gets another PI call this time in the endzone giving the Vikings 1st and goal. And easy running back leap scores a TD. The extra point is no good. Time to pull P.J. Payton!
Taysom Hill takes a short kick to the 33. 2 plays later Michael Thomas picks up the first down. Mark Ingram runs for 5. Kamara catches it just short of the 1st. Vikings encroach and give us the 1st. Kamara slips and picks up only 2 yards. Ingram picks up another 5. Kamara drops the next pass. 4th down. Lutz kicks the 52 yard fieldgoal. 13-10 Vikings.
I think the P.J. Williams experiment has had time enough to be judged a fail. Time for the defense to step it up and get the ball back in Drew Brees’ hands.
Vikings start at the 25. 1st play 1st down. Murray breaks one off that is called back for holding. Kirk Cousins is sacked buy Sheldon Rankins. 2nd and 25. 3rd and 24. A 3 and out brings on the punting team. Defense held.
Kamara brings the punt back to the 33. A little more than 4 minutes remain in the half. Kamara picks up 5. Then Alvin picks up about 10. An incomplete and then Drew throws his first interception.
Defense needs to cover their QBs back. 2 plays and the Vikings pick up a 1st. Incomplete pass. Marshon Lattimore breaks up deep pass. 3rd an 10 becomes 1st and 10. Apple is called for a questionable PI. Murray picks up another 1st. Thielen fumbles the ball and Lattimore brings it back to the 33. Unsportsmanlike conduct on the Vikings adds 15 more yards. A pass to Kamara makes it 1st and inches. Kamara runs into the endzone for the TD. A false start backs the extra point up 5 yards, but it’s still good. Will Lutz is money. Saints up 17 to 13 with 30 seconds left.
Vikings start at the 25. They run out the clock.