6. Quality of drives and misses in situational football | By Craig Peters
The item above has been a key factor as to why the Vikings defense has been unable to get off the field, but Minnesota’s offense also has struggled to stay on it.
Opponents have had 66 possessions and committed five turnovers (7.6 % of possessions), scored 19 touchdowns (28.8 %) and 19 field goals (28.8 %). They’ve had just seven possessions — not including end-of-half or end-of-game clock run-outs — last three or fewer plays and result in a punt or turnover.
The Vikings have had 68 possessions and committed 12 turnovers (17.6 % of possessions), scored 19 touchdowns (27.9 %) and six field goals (8.8 %). They’ve had 25 possessions — not including end-of-half or end-of-game clock run-outs — last three or fewer plays and result in a punt or turnover.
Every week, it’s amazing how many NFL games can come down to situations that swing momentum.
Giving up a safety can be one of those types of things. It’s a function of bad field position and usually leads to good field position after the 2-point play and free kick. The Vikings had one against Green Bay and at Indianapolis, continuing a streak that began in Week 17 of the 2019 season.
Regarding field position, Vikings opponents have had the best average starting field position on drives (own 35.6-yard line, which is well above the league average of 28.7). The Seahawks (20.8), Colts (23.4) and Titans (23.7) are the three teams at making foes start with bad average field position.
The overall stat sheet shows that the Vikings are 6-for-8 on 2-point conversions after touchdowns, but Minnesota was unsuccessful on an attempt in each of the games that it has lost by 1 point this year.
The Vikings defense has done well on third downs, ranking third in the NFL in allowance rate (24 of 71 third downs for a rate of 33.8 %). Minnesota has fared much poorer on fourth downs, however, having allowed nine conversions on 11 attempts (rate of 81.8 % that ranks 26th in the NFL).
Cleveland (10 conversions allowed on 11 attempts for a rate of 90.9 %) is the only team that has allowed more fourth-down conversions.
The NFL average number of allowed conversions on fourth downs by a team through Week 6 was 4.2 on 7.1 attempts (59.2 %).