3 Takeaways from Vikings Underwhelming Loss vs Bears

NFL: Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings
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Monday Night Football between the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears may very well have been the ugliest primetime game of the season… though we did get some (disappointing) fireworks at the end.

Maybe ESPN knew it was coming because they gave the Mannings the night off over on ESPN but you have to think that, as tonight’s ugliness unfolded, network execs were wishing this one would have been flexed out.

Related: Josh Dobbs is fine but he isn’t Kirk Cousins

But when the dust finally settled, it was Chicago who would up on top 12-10. The Vikings offense finally showed up midway through the 4th quarter but that’s when the defense, which kept them in the game all night, finally gave up the big play… and it came at the worst possible time.

Here are three takeaways from the Vikings loss vs the Bears

1. Strong finish can’t cover for Josh Dobbs poor game

The first half of this game was so brutal it isn’t worth mentioning. Let’s just note that Josh Dobbs threw for less than 50 yards and two interceptions. The problem however, was that Dobbs and the Vikings offense didn’t get any better in the 2nd half.

Dobbs did make some big time throws as the Vikings tried to come back late in the 4th quarter. But you can’t hide a stat line that includes four interceptions.

Dobbs finally delivered late, throwing his only touchdown of the game, a 4th quarter strike to TJ Hockenson that put Minnesota up by a point with under 6 minutes left to play. Josh went 4/5 for 65 yards on the drive.

But, the lead wouldn’t hold. And when we take a step back and look at tonight from a long-distance viewpoint, it’ll be clear Josh Dobbs did not play well enough and it cost the Minnesota Vikings another victory that was well within their grasp.

2. Minnesota Vikings defense shines again, but…

Brian Flores’ defense, even if it was against an underwhelming Chicago offense, was the only thing that kept the Vikings in this game. That makes it two-straight weeks that side of the ball has been the only real bright spot for the purple.

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Not only did they keep the game close all night but, after the offense finally got them the lead back, the Vikings defense went out and forced their 2nd turnover of the game. This one, the offense capitalized on, as you saw above.

But (I feel like every section of this blog ends with a ‘but’), they gave up that one big play that finally broke the camel’s back, a 36-yard pass to DJ Moore that put the Bears in easy field goal position and allowed them to take a 2-point lead with just 10 seconds left.

Had the offense been able to muster any steam, prior to that TD drive in the 4th, this contest never would have come down to that final dagger completion. If anyone blames the defense for this loss then you can immediately stop taking advice from them on all important life topics, going forward.

3. Danielle Hunter is going to get paid

There may not be anybody who played tonight that influenced the outcome of the game like Danielle Hunter. It seemed every play the defense made or almost made, Hunter was somewhere nearby the action, if not directly involved.

Related: Minnesota Vikings Defense Rankings 2023 – Week 12

Danielle finished the night with 9 tackles (7 solo), 2 tackles for loss, 2 QB Hits, 1.5 sacks and a huge forced fumble in the 4th quarter. It was one of the more dominant defensive performances I’ve seen out of any Minnesota Vikings since Jared Allen left.

Danielle Hunter is a free agent this offseason. Whether it’s signed by the Wilfs or not, Hunter is going to be collecting some huge paychecks in 2024.