Smith Pick Seals Vikings' 24-16 Win Over 49ers

Heather Diaz
September 12, 2018

He chose to run for it.

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers, Sunday, Sept. 9, 2018, in Minneapolis. And the Lions could be without their best defensive player, pass-rusher Ziggy Ansah, who exited the game with a shoulder injury. "Go for it", coach Mike Zimmer said.

The Minnesota Vikings began the 2018 season on the right foot with an impressive 24-16 win over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday afternoon.

The latter is what sunk Garoppolo and the 49ers in Minnesota on Sunday (the Vikings grabbed the top defensive ranking that formerly belonged to the Jaguars to finish last year). This was all capped off by Pro Bowl safety Harrison Smith taking advantage of a wobbly thrown pass in traffic that he picked off to seal the game. "They stood up to everything we thought they would, but with all the things that went bad we still had a shot at the end there", Garoppolo said.

"We had played too hard at that point to just slide early and give up on that", Cousins said.

Cousins went 20 for 36 for 244 yards, targeting Adam Thielen 12 times. DeForest Buckner had 2½ sacks for San Francisco.

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An offensive-minded coach, Nagy had the aggressive Bears' offense pushing the Packers around the field in the first half. With 50 seconds left before halftime, Mack intercepted a Kizer pass and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown.

Cousins' caption on the photo was, "That's right, Cooper!" "If you're waiting for guys to be open, you're going to be waiting a long time". But the 49ers also could not cash in on four plays from inside the Vikings' 5-yard line, ending with Morris' fumble.

If the opener for both quarterbacks is any sign, both teams will continue to look good after making changes at the most important position of all.

Garoppolo finished 15 for 33 for 261 yards and a touchdown pass to rookie Dante Pettis. The third-down interception by Hughes came next to give the Vikings a 17-3 lead.

"There's not one word to put on it".

"He played the way he always does", said cornerback Richard Sherman, who made his 49ers debut. "Lots of quarterbacks struggle against that defense". He caught six passes for 102 yards. His uncle and childhood confidant, Anthony Jones, a running back for Florida International University, was wounded in a drive-by shooting in Miami on Thursday. In that stretch, Garoppolo averaged 308.4 passing yards. "It didn't end the way we wanted, but I feel like we definitely had some momentum going, and if we can do that we'll be a pretty good offence".

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