(Minneapolis) The Minnesota Vikings completed the biggest comeback in NFL history to beat the Indianapolis Colts 39-36 in overtime on Saturday.
The Vikings erased a 33-point deficit and Greg Joseph ended the debate with a 40-yard field goal with just three seconds left in overtime.
Kirk Cousins threw four touchdown passes and 460 passing yards to help the Vikings (11-3) clinch the National Conference North title.
The Vikings trailed 36-7 late in the third quarter and became only the third team in franchise history to post 10 wins by eight points or less in a single season.
The Colts (4-9-1) fell to the wrong end of the roster, ahead of the Houston Oilers, who squandered a 32-point (35-3) lead at the hands of the Buffalo Bills in the 1992 playoffs.
According to Sportradar data, it was the second loss in 1,551 season or playoff games in the league since 1930 in which a team squandered a lead of more than 30 points to bow out.
The Vikings made history on their second overtime possession, clearing the ball on their first offensive series. Cousins joined KJ Osborn — who scored a touchdown and set a career-high 157 yards — for 15 yards, Adam Thielen for 21 yards and Justin Jefferson for 13 yards to give Joseph the chance to attempt the winning placement.
Ifeadi Odenigbo picked up a penalty for delaying the game when he continued to hug Jefferson as the Vikings tried to get in position to send the ball to the ground and stop the clock. This penalty allowed the home team to come within five yards.
Colts interim head coach Jeff Saturday hasn’t been conservative during his team’s meltdown. Quarterback Matt Ryan was stopped short on a fourth-down, 1-yard-to-go sneak at the Vikings’ 36 line with 2:19 remaining in the fourth quarter.
On the very next play, Cousins then made a trap pass to Dalvin Cook, who converted it into a 64-yard touchdown. TJ Hockenson caught the ball in the end zone on the two-point convert to tie the game 36-36 before the two-minute break.
Dominated 33-0 in the fourth quarter in their most recent game, a 54-19 loss at the hands of the Dallas Cowboys on Dec. 4, the Colts came back from their bye week with energy. They surprised the Vikings with a 33-0 lead at halftime, the NFL’s second-biggest lead this season. The Cincinnati Bengals led the Carolina Panthers 35-0 on November 6.
The halftime loss was the second-largest in Vikings history, behind a 45-10 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in 2002.
The Colts have now been outscored 72-9 in the second half in their last two games. They saw their six-game winning streak against the Vikings come to an end.
You had to go back to 1997 to note the last time the Vikings got the better of the Colts. It was the Indianapolis squad’s last game before selecting Peyton Manning in the draft.