Minnesota Vikings Make Record-Breaking Comeback to Defeat Indianapolis Colts

The Minnesota Vikings have made the biggest comeback in N.F.L. history, beating the Indianapolis Colts 39-36 in overtime at a thrilling U.S. Bank Stadium on Saturday. 

The Vikings were trailing 33-0 at halftime but mounted a comeback in the final two quarters, with a 64-yard catch and run from Dalvin Cook pulling them within two points.

Kirk Cousins then connected with tight end T.J. Hockenson on the two-point attempt to force overtime. 

The Vikings and Colts traded punts before Cousins drove Minnesota 55 yards on six plays, setting up the game-winning field goal from Greg Joseph.

This marks the Vikings' first division title since 2017 and their first playoff berth since 2019.

The team's head coach, Kevin O'Connell, has led a resurgence for the Vikings, who have an 11-3 record and have wrapped up their division crown with three games still to play.

The comeback was sparked by a message from cornerback Patrick Peterson, who told the offence that they just needed to score five touchdowns to get the win. 

"We just pulled off the biggest comeback in N.F.L. history, OK. I need a second," Cousins told N.F.L. Network Insider Tom Pelissero after the game. "How did we do it? Team. It was an ugly first half, but we found a way. Complimentary football. 

I'd love to have a lot of phases, a lot of plays back in the second half, too, but we'll take it."

The first half of the game was dominated by the Colts, who stormed out to a 33-0 lead thanks to a blocked kick returned for a touchdown and a pick-six. 

The Vikings struggled to get anything going offensively, and it looked like the game was all but over at halftime. 

But the team refused to give up, and the players and coaching staff's belief and determination paid off in the end.

The comeback was led by Cousins, who had a strong performance in the second half and overtime. 

He threw for three touchdowns and no interceptions and made several key plays to keep the Vikings in the game. 

Cook also played a crucial role in the comeback, finishing with 224 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns.