The Vikings on Sunday found a winning formula:
ONE 100-yard interception return TD from Xavier Rhodes.
ONE 104-yard kick return TD from Cordarrelle Patterson.
No turnovers until a late fumble by Sam Bradford.
A high-accuracy, low-risk passing day from Bradford. 71% completion rate but only 6.04 yards-per-attempt, Bradford's second-lowest yards-per-attempt average on the season.
Success in short-yardage situations, including a 2-yard TD run by Matt Asiata.
ENOUGH production from receivers not named Stefon Diggs.
A good pass rush and fewer blown plays on the back end.
It worked for one day against a mediocre Cardinals team.
But is success sustainable via this formula?
Only if you think the Vikings' defense and special teams can continue coming up with big plays.
It's a fine line the Vikings walk. On Sunday they landed on the right side of that fine line.
It's REALLY easy to land on the wrong side of that fine line, as we saw during the losing streak.
If the Vikes want to build on yesterday, they must find big plays from their offense.
That means - deep breath Dan - getting Cordarrelle Patterson more involved.
As for the running game...look back at the winning formula above and note that the running backs are not mentioned except for Asiata's touchdown.
Jerick McKinnon's 44-yards-on-16-rushes day was NOT impressive.
McKinnon also had only one reception for negative-three yards.
If the Vikings need to keep following yesterday's formula, they'll close out 2-4 and miss the playoffs.