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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Norv Turner stands by final call in Arizona: ‘It’s a good play’

By Andrew Krammer

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — In addressing the media for the first time since the Vikings’ 23-20 loss at Arizona, Norv Turner stood by the call that ended in the game-losing play.

The circumstances are well documented: Teddy Bridgewater dropped back to pass with 13 seconds left and no timeouts, in range for a game-tying, 48-yard field goal, and was sacked by Dwight Freeney, who caused the fumble to seal the loss.

Coach Mike Zimmer said he thought about kicking the field goal, but elected to let Turner run one more play in an attempt at an easier kick. Nearly a week after Zimmer told the Vikings’ flagship radio station, KFAN, that he did not like the play call, Turner stood by his decision.

“This is one that has worked for us last year, it’s worked for us in the past,” Turner said Thursday. “We never have a sideline play where we don’t have a quick outlet. Adrian [Peterson] was the quick outlet. The way they defended the play, if we had to do it over again we would’ve thrown the ball over Adrian’s head and kicked the field goal. They defended the play real well.

“Obviously we’re on to Chicago, but the only thing I’d say is I think everyone will learn from that play.”

Bridgewater, who found success throughout the game with Turner’s play calls, said his hesitation on the final play came as he waited for his receivers to near the sideline. Instead, Freeney beat left tackle Matt Kalil with a spin move and knocked the ball from Bridgewater’s hands before he could throw.

“I couldn’t complete the ball in the middle of the field because the guy would get tackled and we wouldn’t have had time to get the field goal team out there,” Bridgewater said this week. “I probably could have just got the ball over Adrian’s head a split second faster, but it was a bang-bang play.”

The play call, which was a flood right concept toward the sideline, drew some scrutiny, including from Zimmer, because of how long some of the routes took to develop with Bridgewater behind a shaky offensive line. Zimmer told KFAN: “No, it’s not a good play…I did not like that play.”

As Turner and Bridgewater pointed out, the quarterback could’ve thrown the ball away near his outlet in Peterson, who leaked out of the backfield and into the flat near the right sideline.

But Bridgewater, who said he had no option to check out of the play, didn’t pull the trigger with the Cardinals blanketing his options downfield.

“It’s a good play,” Turner said. “There’s no reason to check out of it.”

The post Norv Turner stands by final call in Arizona: ‘It’s a good play’ appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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