Minnesota Vikings v New Orleans Saints: A Recap
By Elias Martin Berg
After their win against the Detroit Lions, the Minnesota Vikings headed across the pond to face the New Orleans Saints at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
The Vikings looked sharp and ready to square off against the Saints, who were without star QB Jameis Winston for the weekend.
Star WR Justin Jefferson put on a show for the UK crowd in North London and Eric Kendricks was in full control of the defence.
I had a chance to sit down with both players before the game on Sunday.
Player Profile – Justin Jefferson
Match Stats: 13/10 147 yds
The 22nd round pick of the 2020 NFL Draft is looking like one of the best picks of the Minnesota Vikings franchise. With great athleticism, good speed and safe hands, the 3rd year receiver is a go-to player when it comes to winning games.
Being in England for the first time with the Vikings, the 23-year-old wanted to prove himself after what had been some difficult weeks with few yards and few touchdowns.
In my interview he spoke about getting covered by several defenders and how the Saints would have a difficult task with covering all of them.
Fantasy owners had also been vocal on social media, criticising Jefferson for not getting enough points for their teams and when asked about this he responded with this:
“I don’t really care about the fantasy points; I mean people don’t really see what’s on the film. I can’t really do anything if somebody double-teams me, so it is what it is. At the end of the day what matters is that we get the win, as long as we get the W I`m fine.”
The young receiver also spoke highly of QB Kirk Cousins and his relationship with the veteran. Jefferson praises the team captain and appreciate that their lockers are right next to each other, which makes for great team chemistry. “Every single day we just talk and communicate, just trying to find something new about each other but it’s definitely cool to connect with him ever since I got into the league.”
Player Profile – Eric Kendricks
Match stats: 8 tackles
The line-backer has been with the Vikings since 2015 and has visited London before. The 30-year-old`s last visit to the UK was when the Vikings came to face the Browns at Twickenham in 2017 and was now looking forward to playing in North London.
The dome at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis was not there to protect the players from the unstable London weather and Kendricks made it clear that the roof of the stadium makes little to no difference.
“We play on the road all the time in open stadiums; I grew up playing in an open stadium. Minnesota was my first dome stadium that I played in, but we`re used to the weather so it doesn’t matter how cold it gets.”
Kendricks also reflects on the Vikings – Saints rivalry and anticipates that its going to be a tough and physical battle and likes the fact the game is being played in London. “It’s got to be bigger, it`s got to be a big deal coming here. I feel extremely blessed, it’s a cool opportunity for me. Let`s do this!”
The Vikings ended up with a 28-25 win over the Saints after Saints kicker Will Lutz failed to score a late field goal in the 4th quarter, to the split joy and disappointment amongst the crowd at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.