Led by Griffen, Vikings’ defenders shine for NFC during Pro Bowl

Despite being on the losing end in the 2017 Pro Bowl, those players representing the Minnesota Vikings still found a way to provide some excitement.

Making his second straight appearance in the Pro Bowl, Minnesota Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen definitely made sure on Sunday that there were no doubts as to why he was selected to play in the game again this year.

Griffen finished the night in Orlando, Florida with a total of eight tackles and three sacks, both NFC team highs. However, his efforts did not prove to be enough as the AFC was able to defeat the NFC on Sunday by a final score of 20-13.

Of the other members of the Vikings’ defense that participated in the game, safety Harrison Smith had five total tackles (second on the NFC only to Griffen), both defensive tackle Linval Joseph and linebacker Anthony Barr finished with three tackles each, and cornerback Xavier Rhodes was not able to register any tackles for the night but he did have one beauty of a pass defense in the first quarter.

Minnesota’s lone offensive player in wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson was able to at least participate on Sunday. The Vikings pass catcher ended Sunday with just one catch for one yard.

Patterson was selected to the Pro Bowl this year for his work during the season as a kick returner. But since there are no kickoffs in the NFL’s annual all-star game, he was unable to show off the skills that helped him get a spot on the NFC roster.

Surprisingly, Griffen was not named the defensive MVP of the game. Instead, that honor went to Buffalo Bills linebacker Lorenzo Alexander after he finished Sunday with nine tackles and the AFC’s game-sealing interception in the fourth quarter.

Even if Griffen did not come away a Pro Bowl MVP trophy, at least he and Joseph provided the crowd with at least one of the night’s most memorable moments.

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