The start of today’s Vikings-Ravens game has gone just like you’d dream a snow bowl would. The snowfall has ranged from flurries to a cold white blanket, and the fumbling, slipping and stumbling has come with it.
Each team had a turnover in the game’s first 10 minutes - Joe Flacco’s 15th interception of the year and a Toby Gerhart fumble. The Vikings fumbled earlier, but recovered... for a 13-yard gain after the drop. Yep, it’s legit snow football.
The Ravens capitalized on Minnesota’s turnover to take a 7-0 lead with 4:14 to go in the first quarter on a 1-yard pass from Flacco to tight end Ed Dickson. It was Dickson’s first touchdown catch since 2011.
Gerhart’s fumble that set up the score appeared to be the wrong call, as the runner looked like he still had control of the ball with his knee down. But James Ihedigbo was credited with the force and Matt Elam with his second career fumble recovery.
The Ravens took over at the Vikings’ 19 and needed just four plays to punch it to the end zone. Flacco scrambled 22 yards to the 3 on the first snap. Two one-yard runs by Bernard Pierce advanced Baltimore to the 1. And then Flacco rolled right, finding Dickson in the back of the end zone.
Update: As the snow continues to pour at M&T Bank Stadium, the Vikings have gotten on to the scoreboard with 4:28 to go in the first half.
Kicker Blair Walsh kept his balance and drilled a 39-yard field goal to cut the Ravens’ lead to 7-3. Minnesota drove 45 yards in 11 plays and 5:42, the first possession after running back Adrian Peterson left the game.
The NFL’s leading rusher suffered an ankle injury after a reception and fumble with about 11 minutes remaining in the second quarter. His return is questionable, but it didn’t look good. He was helped to the bench, unable to put weight on his leg, and after attempting to walk, Peterson was carted to the locker room. He has run for 13 yards on seven carries.
With the Vikings 3-8-1, Peterson’s health is likely of greater concern, especially in conditions like these. So it’s probably a decent bet that he doesn’t return to the contest.
Amid the snow and resulting slopfest, the Vikings have outgained the Ravens 127-67 so far.