NFC North Roundup: Expect the Unexpected


Sep 23, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen (69) and linebacker Chad Greenway (52) celebrate a fumble recovery during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at the Metrodome. The Vikings defeated the 49ers 24-13. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE

Week three is in the book and what a wild week it was, especially in the NFC North! Here is a quick rundown of all the week three action in the NFC North and a look at the updated standings and week four schedule.

Minnesota Vikings 24, San Francisco 49ers 13 (box score)
This was the third time in as many weeks that the San Francisco 49ers squared of against an NFC North opponent, but it was the first time that the black and blue division got the better of them. The Minnesota Vikings defense set the tone for the game by forcing three turnovers, recording three sacks, and blocking a field goal attempt. The Minnesota offense only scored on one of seven second half possessions, but San Francisco was unable to overcome the 17-3 halftime deficit.

Chicago Bears 23, St. Louis Rams 6 (box score)
The Bears defense picked up their dysfunctional offense in leading the team to victory over the Rams. Sam Bradford was sacked six times and intercepted twice, including one returned for a touchdown, as the Rams offense could only muster two long field goals on the day. The Bears offense wasn’t much better. They struggled to run the ball without Matt Forte and Jay Cutler posted just a 58.9 quarterback rating on the day.

Tennessee Titans 44, Detroit Lions 41 (box score)
In one of the wilder finishes that you’ll see, the Lions dropped an overtime game to the Tennessee Titans. The Lions turned an 11-point halftime deficit into a seven-point lead with just under seven minutes to play, but watched as the Titans answered with three touchdowns in the span of five and a half minutes. Trailing by 14 with a minute thirty to play, and starting quarterback Matthew Stafford out of the game, Shaun Hill lead the Lions on a touchdown drive and, after a successful onside kick, completed a Hail Mary pass to Titus Young as time expired. Tennessee won the coin toss to begin overtime and drove down the field and kicked a field goal. New overtime rules stipulate that both teams get a chance to possess the ball (unless a team scores a touchdown), so the Lions got a chance with the ball. They quickly worked their way into the red zone, but failed to convert a fourth-and-one on the Tennessee seven yard line due to a botched snap on a quarterback sneak attempt. Game over.

Seattle Seahawks 14, Green Bay Packers 12 (box score)
After losing just one game during the 2011 season, the Green Bay Packers now have two thanks to the defensive struggle turned thriller against the Seattle Seahawks. Russell Wilson scrambled then heaved a pass into the end zone on the game’s final play. It initially appeared to be intercepted by Packers safety M.D. Jennings but Golden Tate was able to get his hands on the ball as well. The officials ruled simultaneous possession and since ties go to the receiver, the play resulted in a touchdown.
Watch the final play.

NFC North Standings

TeamRecordvs. Div
 Minnesota Vikings2-10-0
 Chicago Bears2-10-1
 Green Bay Packers1-21-0
 Detroit Lions1-20-0

NFC North Week 4 Schedule
Vikings at Lions, Sunday, 1:00 PM
Saints at Packers, Sunday, 4:25 PM
Bears at Cowboys, Monday, 8:30 PM