NFL News & Analysis

NFL Week 18 Game Recap: Minnesota Vikings 29, Chicago Bears 13

Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) passes the ball during the first quarter against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears both walked away from Week 18 with exactly what they wanted.

The Vikings got out of the 29-13 win healthy and still in play for the No. 2 seed in the NFC. The Bears' loss dropped them to 3-14 for the season, and because the Texans beat the Colts, Chicago has now secured the No. 1 pick in the 2023 draft

Offensive spotlight: A couple of backup running backs looked ready for a full-time role on Sunday. Alexander Mattison racked up 54 yards and two scores on 10 carries, while Khalil Herbert ran for 54 yards on 10 carries himself. Both are going to finish the season as two of the highest-graded backups in the league.

Defensive spotlight: Vikings CB Duke Shelley has been on an absolute tear ever since taking over as the full-time starter in Week 15. With two pass breakups on the day, Shelley now has six pass breakups over his last four games. He allowed only one catch for 20 yards across five targets in Week 18.

Rookie spotlight: With nothing on the line, Jalen Nailor got an extended run. He played 33 snaps on Sunday — 21 more than his previous career high — and hauled in four of his five targets for 62 yards. That’s now back-to-back games in which Nailor went for 60-plus receiving yards. 

Offensive line spotlight: Bears left tackle Braxton Jones ended his exceptional rookie season on a high note. On 31 pass-blocking snaps, the fifth-rounder didn’t allow a single pressure — the first game all season in which he didn’t allow a pressure. He already looks like one of the biggest steals of the 2022 draft class.

Box Score

Passing
Minnesota Vikings
Player Fantasy Comp/Att Yds YPA TD Int Sacks Rtg
Kirk Cousins 13.0 17 / 20 225 11.2 1 0 0 130.2
Nick Mullens 4.4 11 / 13 116 8.9 0 1 0 71.8
Chicago Bears
Player Fantasy Comp/Att Yds YPA TD Int Sacks Rtg
Nathan Peterman 9.3 11 / 19 114 6.0 1 0 1 92.9
Tim Boyle -0.9 2 / 8 33 4.1 0 2 0 4.7
Rushing
Minnesota Vikings
Player Fantasy Car Yds YPC TD Long Fum Lost
Alexander Mattison 19.0 10 54 5.4 2 11 0
Adam Thielen 9.2 1 4 4.0 0 4 0
Nick Mullens 4.4 4 8 2.0 0 4 0
Jalen Reagor 4.2 1 5 5.0 0 5 0
Kene Nwangwu 3.9 5 13 2.6 0 8 0
Dalvin Cook 3.7 11 37 3.4 0 15 1
Ty Chandler 2.0 6 20 3.3 0 10 0
Chicago Bears
Player Fantasy Car Yds YPC TD Long Fum Lost
Velus Jones Jr. 14.0 1 42 42.0 1 42 0
Nathan Peterman 9.3 2 7 3.5 0 6 0
Khalil Herbert 5.9 10 50 5.0 0 13 0
David Montgomery 2.1 7 21 3.0 0 8 0
Tim Boyle -0.9 2 -2 -1.0 0 -1 0
Receiving
Minnesota Vikings
Player Fantasy Tgt Rec Yds YPT TD Long
K.J. Osborn 19.7 6 5 117 19.5 0 66
Alexander Mattison 19.0 1 1 6 6.0 0 6
Jalen Nailor 10.2 5 4 62 12.4 0 26
Adam Thielen 9.2 3 2 8 2.7 1 4
C.J. Ham 8.7 4 4 47 11.8 0 17
Justin Jefferson 7.8 5 4 38 7.6 0 23
Irv Smith Jr. 4.4 3 3 14 4.7 0 8
Jalen Reagor 4.2 2 2 17 8.5 0 10
Kene Nwangwu 3.9 1 1 16 16.0 0 16
Dalvin Cook 3.7 1 1 0 0.0 0 0
T.J. Hockenson 2.6 1 1 16 16.0 0 16
Chicago Bears
Player Fantasy Tgt Rec Yds YPT TD Long
Cole Kmet 15.7 5 4 57 11.4 1 17
Velus Jones Jr. 14.0 2 1 28 14.0 0 28
Khalil Herbert 5.9 2 1 -1 -0.5 0 -1
Chase Claypool 4.9 6 2 29 4.8 0 20
Dante Pettis 3.9 6 2 19 3.2 0 13
N'Keal Harry 1.7 2 1 7 3.5 0 7
Byron Pringle 1.5 1 1 5 5.0 0 5
Equanimeous St. Brown 1.3 1 1 3 3.0 0 3
Trestan Ebner 0.0 2 0 0 0.0 0 0

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