2013 Minnesota Vikings Season
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2013 Minnesota Vikings Season

2013 Minnesota Vikings season
Head coachLeslie Frazier
OwnerZygi Wilf
Home fieldMall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
Results
Record5-10-1
Division place4th NFC North
Playoff finishDid not qualify
Pro BowlersKR Cordarrelle Patterson
RB Adrian Peterson
Uniform
Vikings uniforms16.png

The 2013 season was the Minnesota Vikings' 53rd in the National Football League. It also marked the Vikings' final season playing their home games at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome; the team played their home games at TCF Bank Stadium for the 2014 and 2015 seasons while construction of U.S. Bank Stadium, which opened in 2016, took place on the site of the Metrodome. Following a Week 9 loss to the Dallas Cowboys, the Vikings were no longer able to match their 10-6 record from 2012, and their loss to the Baltimore Ravens five weeks later sealed their elimination from playoff contention.

The Vikings failed to win a road game (0-7-1) for the first time since 2001. Much like in 2001, the Vikings did moderately well (13th) on offensive yardage (344.2 yards per game) despite a quarterback carousel not present in 2001, but ranked among the worst in defensive yardage (397.6 yards per game); only the Dallas Cowboys gave up more yards on defense with 415.3 per game. The Vikings' defense also allowed the most points in the NFL in 2013 at 480 (30.0 points per game), four points shy of matching the most points the team ever allowed in a single season.

It took until Week 10 for the Vikings to record their first win on American soil, their only other victory up to that point having come in the NFL International Series game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at London's Wembley Stadium in Week 4. Despite winning their last four home games to finish with an overall record of 5-10-1, the Vikings fired head coach Leslie Frazier after just over three seasons with the team.

Offseason

Draft

2013 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Contract Notes
Round Overall
1 23 Sharrif Floyd Defensive tackle Florida 4 years / $8 million
25 Xavier Rhodes Cornerback Florida State 4 years / $7.8 million from Seahawks[a]
29 Cordarrelle Patterson Wide receiver Tennessee 4 years / $7.2 million from Patriots[b]
2 52 Traded to the New England Patriots[b]
3 83 Traded to the New England Patriots[b]
4 102 Traded to the New England Patriots[b] from Lions[c]
120 Gerald Hodges Linebacker Penn State 4 years / $2.58 million[1]
5 155 Jeff Locke Punter UCLA 4 years / $2.344 million[2]
6 176 Traded to the Arizona Cardinals[e] from Titans[d]
189 Traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers[f]
196 Jeff Baca Guard UCLA 4 years / $2.256 million[3] from Broncos via Eagles and Buccaneers[f]
7 213 Michael Mauti Linebacker Penn State 4 years / $2.2 million[1] from Cardinals[e]
214 Travis Bond Guard North Carolina 4 years / $2.22 million[4] from Bills via Seahawks[a]
229 Everett Dawkins Defensive tackle Florida State 4 years / $2.2 million[1] from Vikings via Patriots[b] and Buccaneers[f]

Notes

^[a] Seattle traded their first-round (25th overall), seventh-round (214th overall) and 2014 third-round (96th overall) selections to Minnesota in exchange for wide receiver Percy Harvin.[5]
^[b] Minnesota traded their second-, third- and seventh-round selections (52nd, 83rd and 229th overall), as well as Detroit's fourth-round pick (102nd overall)[c], to New England to move up to the 29th overall selection.[6]
^[c] Detroit traded their 2012 seventh-round selection (219th overall--Trevor Guyton) and their 2013 fourth-round selection (102nd overall) to Minnesota for their 2012 fifth-round selection (138th overall--Tahir Whitehead) and the 2012 seventh-round selection (223rd overall--Travis Lewis) that they received from New England in the trade for Randy Moss in 2010.[7]
^[d] During the 2012 NFL Draft, Tennessee traded their 2013 sixth-round selection (176th overall) for the 2012 seventh-round selection (211th overall--Scott Solomon) that Minnesota had obtained from Cleveland.[8]
^[e] Minnesota traded Tennessee's sixth-round selection (176th overall)[d] to Arizona for their seventh-round selection (213th overall) and CB A. J. Jefferson.[7]
^[f] Tampa Bay traded Denver's sixth-round selection (196th overall) and Minnesota's original seventh-round selection (229th overall) that they received from New England in a trade for RB LeGarrette Blount to Minnesota for their sixth-round selection (189th overall).[9]

Roster changes

RE-SIGNINGS
Date Player name Position Contract terms
January 7, 2013 Chase Baker DT 2 years / $900,000 [RFC][10]
March 12, 2013 Joe Berger C/G 1 year / $945,000[11]
Jerome Felton FB 3 years / $7.5 million[12]
Erin Henderson OLB 2 years / $4 million[13]
Phil Loadholt OT 4 years / $25 million[14]
Jamarca Sanford FS 2 years / $5 million[15]
Jerome Simpson WR 1 year / $2.1 million[16]
March 21, 2013 Andrew Sendejo FS 1 year / $630,000[17]
March 26, 2013 Marvin Mitchell OLB 1 year / $765,000[18]
April 12, 2013 A. J. Jefferson CB 1 year / $1.323 million[19]
April 15, 2013 Troy Kropog OT 1 year / $630,000[20]
April 22, 2013 Marcus Sherels CB 1 year / $555,000[21]
October 17, 2013 Brandan Bishop S [22][PS]
October 22, 2013 Shaun Prater CB 4 years / $2.285 million[23][24]
October 31, 2013 Chase Ford TE 2 years / $900,000[25][26][24]
November 4, 2013 Justin Trattou DE 2 years / $1.05 million[27][24][PS]
November 9, 2013 Audie Cole LB 3 years / $1.71 million[28][29][24]
November 11, 2013 Kevin Murphy T [30][PS]
December 11, 2013 Bradley Randle RB [31][PS]
December 16, 2013 Mike Remmers OT 2 years / $900,000[32][24]
December 18, 2013 Joe Banyard RB 2 years / $900,000[33][24][PS]
Spencer Nealy DE 2 years / $930,000[33][24]
December 24, 2013 Robert Steeples CB 3 years / $1.49 million[24][PS]
^[RFC] Denotes this is a reserve/future contract.
^[PS] Denotes a signing to the Practice Squad.
DEPARTURES
Date Player name Position Note New team
March 4, 2013 Michael Jenkins WR Released[34] New England Patriots[35]
March 11, 2013 Percy Harvin WR Traded[a] Seattle Seahawks
March 12, 2013 Antoine Winfield CB Released[36] Seattle Seahawks[37]
March 14, 2013 Jasper Brinkley MLB UFA Arizona Cardinals[38]
March 15, 2013 Geoff Schwartz G/T UFA Kansas City Chiefs[39]
April 30, 2013 Nicholas Taylor CB Released[40]
May 6, 2013 Chris Kluwe P Released[41] Oakland Raiders[42]
June 10, 2013 Devin Aromashodu WR UFA Chicago Bears[43]
August 31, 2013 Brandon Burton CB Released[44] Buffalo Bills
Stephen Burton WR Jacksonville Jaguars
Tyrone McKenzie LB
September 9, 2013 D'Aundre Reed DE Injury settlement[45] San Francisco 49ers
October 1, 2013 DeMarcus Love OT Released[46] Jacksonville Jaguars
October 8, 2013 McLeod Bethel-Thompson QB Released[47] San Francisco 49ers[48]
October 9, 2013 George Johnson DE Released[48]
November 6, 2013 Everett Dawkins DT Claimed off practice squad[49] Dallas Cowboys
November 13, 2013 Travis Bond G Claimed off practice squad[50] Carolina Panthers
November 25, 2013 A. J. Jefferson CB Released[51]
ADDITIONS
Date Player name Position Previous team Contract terms
March 14, 2013 Matt Cassel QB Kansas City Chiefs 2 years / $7.4 million[52]
March 15, 2013 Greg Jennings WR Green Bay Packers 5 years / $45 million[53]
April 30, 2013 Zach Line FB Southern Methodist
Undrafted FA[54]
3 years / $1.49 million[55]
June 24, 2013 Desmond Bishop LB Green Bay Packers 1 year / $1.5 million[56]
October 6, 2013 Josh Freeman QB Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1 year / $3.0 million
November 26, 2013 Kip Edwards CB Buffalo Bills [57]

Preseason

Schedule

The Vikings' preseason opponents and schedule were announced on April 4, 2013. Their preseason began with a loss to the Houston Texans at Mall of America Field on August 9, followed by road defeats against the Buffalo Bills and the San Francisco 49ers; the game against the 49ers was the Vikings' second preseason matchup against the same opposition in two years. The preseason program concluded on a positive note - a home victory against the Tennessee Titans on August 29.[88]

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance NFL.com
recap
1 August 9 Houston Texans L 13-27 0-1 Mall of America Field 62,306 Recap
2 August 16 at Buffalo Bills L 16-20 0-2 Ralph Wilson Stadium 60,164 Recap
3 August 25 at San Francisco 49ers L 14-34 0-3 Candlestick Park 69,732 Recap
4 August 29 Tennessee Titans W 24-23 1-3 Mall of America Field 62,603 Recap

Game summaries

Week 1: vs. Houston Texans

Week 2: at Buffalo Bills

Week 3: at San Francisco 49ers

Week 4: vs. Tennessee Titans

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance NFL.com
recap
1 September 8 at Detroit Lions L 24-34 0-1 Ford Field 62,461 Recap
2 September 15 at Chicago Bears L 30-31 0-2 Soldier Field 62,181 Recap
3 September 22 Cleveland Browns L 27-31 0-3 Mall of America Field 63,672 Recap
4 September 29 Pittsburgh Steelers W 34-27 1-3 Wembley Stadium (London, UK) 83,518 Recap
5 Bye
6 October 13 Carolina Panthers L 10-35 1-4 Mall of America Field 63,963 Recap
7 October 21 at New York Giants L 7-23 1-5 MetLife Stadium 79,314 Recap
8 October 27 Green Bay Packers L 31-44 1-6 Mall of America Field 64,134 Recap
9 November 3 at Dallas Cowboys L 23-27 1-7 AT&T Stadium 85,360 Recap
10 November 7 Washington Redskins W 34-27 2-7 Mall of America Field 64,011 Recap
11 November 17 at Seattle Seahawks L 20-41 2-8 CenturyLink Field 68,235 Recap
12 November 24 at Green Bay Packers T 26-26 (OT) 2-8-1 Lambeau Field 77,871 Recap
13 December 1 Chicago Bears W 23-20 (OT) 3-8-1 Mall of America Field 64,134 Recap
14 December 8 at Baltimore Ravens L 26-29 3-9-1 M&T Bank Stadium 70,921 Recap
15 December 15 Philadelphia Eagles W 48-30 4-9-1 Mall of America Field 64,087 Recap
16 December 22 at Cincinnati Bengals L 14-42 4-10-1 Paul Brown Stadium 61,555 Recap
17 December 29 Detroit Lions W 14-13 5-10-1 Mall of America Field 64,134 Recap
Team names in bold indicate Vikings' home games.
 #  Blue/red indicates the International Series game in London.

Game summaries

Week 1: at Detroit Lions

Week 2: at Chicago Bears

Week 3: vs. Cleveland Browns

Week 4: vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

NFL International Series

Week 6: vs. Carolina Panthers

Week 7: at New York Giants

Week 8: vs. Green Bay Packers

With Josh Freeman ruled out after suffering a concussion in the previous game, Christian Ponder reclaimed his spot as starting quarterback. Cordarrelle Patterson got the game off to a good start for the Vikings, returning the opening kickoff 109 yards for a touchdown to tie the NFL record. However, Aaron Rodgers responded for the Packers by leading his offense on a 14-play, 90-yard drive, culminating in an 11-yard touchdown pass to Jordy Nelson. The sides then exchanged field goals before Rodgers found Nelson again in the second quarter for a 76-yard touchdown. On the Vikings' next possession, they were forced to punt, but Micah Hyde was able to return the kick 93 yards for another Packers touchdown to make the score 24-10. A controversial pass interference call against Packers cornerback Tramon Williams late in the half set the Vikings up with a first down on the Packers' 14-yard line; two plays later, Adrian Peterson had the ball in the end zone for an 8-yard touchdown, which kept the Vikings in with a chance going into the second half.

But the Packers offense remained unstoppable as Rodgers again led a long drive, capped by a 1-yard touchdown run from Eddie Lacy after they had converted three times on third down and once on fourth down during the series. After another three-and-out for the Vikings, the Packers offense picked up four first downs in the space of five plays on the way to a 25-yard touchdown run for James Starks. The Vikings again went three-and-out on their next possession, but this time their defense was able to stop Green Bay at the goal line, limiting them to a 20-yard Mason Crosby field goal to make the score 41-17 with just over six minutes to play. Patterson again had a big return on the ensuing kickoff, taking it 51 yards to the Minnesota 42-yard line to set up a short field. Five plays later, Toby Gerhart narrowed the deficit to 17 points with a 13-yard touchdown run. Vikings cornerback Josh Robinson was penalized on the onside kick that followed for touching the ball before it had gone 10 yards, allowing the Packers to run down the clock before Crosby slotted another field goal, this time from 45 yards. Inside the two-minute warning, Ponder threw an incompletion on fourth down, only for Tramon Williams to again be penalized for pass interference against Patterson, allowing Ponder the opportunity for a 19-yard touchdown run two plays later. The Vikings were unable to recover the onside kick, and Green Bay knelt out the clock for a 44-31 win.

Week 9: at Dallas Cowboys

Following the high-scoring loss to the Packers, the Vikings, continuing with Christian Ponder as their quarterback, travel to Arlington, Texas to face the Dallas Cowboys. The first quarter was all field goals, as Dallas scored first with a 41-yarder by Dan Bailey, followed by a 23-yarder for the Vikings by Blair Walsh. In the second quarter, Bailey made another field goal from 44 yards to put the Cowboys up by 3, but the Vikings took a 10-6 lead into halftime, capping the ensuing 79-yard drive with a 6-yard run by Ponder.

After the half, Cowboy quarterback Tony Romo completed two consecutive 26-yard passes to tight end Jason Witten to give them an early touchdown and restore their three-point lead. On the very next play from scrimmage, Ponder fumbled the ball as he was sacked in the end zone, and the Cowboys' Nick Hayden recovered it for a touchdown, meaning the Vikings went from 10-6 up to 20-10 down in the space of two scrimmage plays. The Vikings responded immediately with a quick, six-play drive, culminating with a 31-yard pass from Ponder to Kyle Rudolph to cut the Cowboys' lead back to three points.

After a series of punts going into the fourth quarter, Adrian Peterson scored for the Vikings with an 11-yard run with almost six minutes to go, but Walsh pushed the extra point kick wide right, giving the Vikings a three-point lead over the Cowboys. Vikings cornerback A. J. Jefferson intercepted Romo on the Cowboys' ensuing drive, putting the Vikings in a position to potentially take over the game, but the offense went three-and-out and was forced to punt. The Cowboys progressed downfield quickly, never faced with a third down, and scored with a 7-yard touchdown pass from Romo to Dwayne Harris, the third time the Vikings had given up a game-winning score in 2013. With less than 30 seconds to play, but they were unable to make any significant territorial gains and Ponder's last-second hail mary fell short, giving the Cowboys a 27-23 win.

Week 10: vs. Washington Redskins

Week 11: at Seattle Seahawks

Week 12: at Green Bay Packers

The Vikings traveled to Green Bay in week 12 to face a Packers team missing quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who had suffered a fractured left collarbone three weeks earlier. After successive punts from each side started the game, the Packers were the first to score as backup QB Scott Tolzien ran in for a 6-yard touchdown, but two field goals from Blair Walsh and a 1-yard touchdown run for Adrian Peterson meant the Vikings took a 13-7 lead into halftime. They extended their lead midway through the third quarter as Christian Ponder hit tight end Rhett Ellison for a 12-yard touchdown, and Walsh made it a 16-point lead with a 29-yard field goal on the second play of the fourth quarter.

The Packers pulled the struggling Tolzien after the Ellison touchdown and replaced him with the recently re-signed Matt Flynn. Flynn then led the Packers on three consecutive scoring drives in the fourth quarter, starting with a 3-yard touchdown run for Eddie Lacy. Flynn's pass to Andrew Quarless on the two-point attempt fell incomplete, but Flynn was able to find Jarrett Boykin for a 6-yard touchdown on the next drive to reduce the Vikings' lead to three points. Inside the two-minute warning, Flynn combined with James Jones for a 28-yard completion on 4th-and-6, setting up Mason Crosby for the game-tying, 27-yard field goal. The Packers won the overtime coin toss and took the opening possession down to the Minnesota 2-yard line before having to settle for a field goal, only for Walsh to respond with a 35-yard effort. The two sides then exchanged possession as neither was able to put together a significant drive and the game ended in a 26-26 tie.

Week 13: vs. Chicago Bears

Week 14: at Baltimore Ravens

Playing in the snow in Baltimore, the Vikings sought out their first road win of the season. During the first half, Adrian Peterson injured his ankle and was dropped from the game. Despite taking the lead with a touchdown late in the fourth quarter, the Vikings were unable to hold on as the Ravens scored a game-winning touchdown with four seconds left. With the loss, the Vikings dropped to 3-9-1 and were officially eliminated from postseason contention.

Week 15: vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Week 16: at Cincinnati Bengals

Week 17: vs. Detroit Lions

In the last game to be played at the Metrodome before its demolition, the Vikings hosted their divisional rivals, the Detroit Lions. This turned out to be the only game of the Vikings' season (including preseason) in which the opposing team scored fewer than 20 points. A 50-yard run from Cordarrelle Patterson for the first score of the game put the Vikings up 7-0, where the score remained through halftime. After the half, Reggie Bush struck back with a 19-yard touchdown reception to tie the game at 7-7 in the third. The fourth quarter saw David Akers make two field goals to put the Lions in the lead 13-7. However, Matt Cassel threw a TD pass to Patterson to put the Vikings back in the lead 14-13, which they managed to hold onto for the remaining nine minutes of the game.

Head coach Leslie Frazier was fired as head coach of the Minnesota Vikings the following day. His tenure ended with a record of 21-32-1 in over three years.

Standings

Division

NFC North
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
(4)Green Bay Packers 8 7 1 .531 3-2-1 6-5-1 417 428 W1
Chicago Bears 8 8 0 .500 2-4 4-8 445 478 L2
Detroit Lions 7 9 0 .438 4-2 6-6 395 376 L4
Minnesota Vikings 5 10 1 .344 2-3-1 4-7-1 391 480 W1

Conference

# Team Division W L T PCT DIV CONF SOS SOV STK
Division winners
1 Seattle Seahawks West 13 3 0 .813 4-2 10-2 0.490 0.445 W1
2 Carolina Panthers South 12 4 0 .750 5-1 9-3 0.494 0.451 W3
3 Philadelphia Eagles East 10 6 0 .625 4-2 9-3 0.453 0.391 W2
4 Green Bay Packers North 8 7 1 .531 3-2-1 6-5-1 0.453 0.371 W1
Wild cards
5 San Francisco 49ers West 12 4 0 .750 5-1 9-3 0.494 0.414 W6
6 New Orleans Saints South 11 5 0 .688 5-1 9-3 0.516 0.455 W1
Did not qualify for the playoffs
7 Arizona Cardinals West 10 6 0 .625 2-4 6-6 0.531 0.444 L1
8[a] Chicago Bears North 8 8 0 .500 2-4 4-8 0.465 0.469 L2
9 Dallas Cowboys East 8 8 0 .500 5-1 7-5 0.484 0.363 L1
10[b][c] New York Giants East 7 9 0 .438 3-3 6-6 0.520 0.366 W2
11[d] Detroit Lions North 7 9 0 .438 4-2 6-6 0.457 0.402 L4
12 St. Louis Rams West 7 9 0 .438 1-5 4-8 0.551 0.446 L1
13 Minnesota Vikings North 5 10 1 .344 2-3-1 4-7-1 0.512 0.450 W1
14[e] Atlanta Falcons South 4 12 0 .250 1-5 3-9 0.553 0.313 L2
15 Tampa Bay Buccaneers South 4 12 0 .250 1-5 2-10 0.574 0.391 L3
16 Washington Redskins East 3 13 0 .188 0-6 1-11 0.516 0.438 L8
Tiebreakers[f]
  1. ^ Chicago defeated Dallas head-to-head (Week 14, 45-28).
  2. ^ The New York Giants and Detroit finished with a better conference record than St. Louis.
  3. ^ The New York Giants defeated Detroit head-to-head (Week 16, 23-20 (OT)).
  4. ^ Detroit finished with a better conference record than St. Louis.
  5. ^ Atlanta finished with a better conference record than Tampa Bay.
  6. ^ When breaking ties for three or more teams under the NFL's rules, they are first broken within divisions, then comparing only the highest ranked remaining team from each division.

Staff

Final roster

Statistics

Team leaders

Category Player(s) Value
Passing yards Matt Cassel 1,807
Passing touchdowns Matt Cassel 11
Rushing yards Adrian Peterson 1,266
Rushing touchdowns Adrian Peterson 10
Receptions Greg Jennings 68
Receiving yards Greg Jennings 804
Receiving touchdowns Greg Jennings 4
Points Blair Walsh 121
Kickoff return yards Cordarrelle Patterson 1,393 *
Punt return yards Marcus Sherels 335
Tackles Chad Greenway 134
Sacks Jared Allen 11.5
Interceptions Chad Greenway 3
Forced fumbles Jared Allen
Jamarca Sanford
2

* Vikings single season record.

League rankings

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 32)
Passing offense 3,427 214.2 23rd
Rushing offense 2,081 130.1 8th
Total offense 5,508 344.2 13th
Passing defense 4,598 287.4 31st
Rushing defense 1,767 110.4 16th
Total defense 6,365 397.8 31st

References

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