Jaren Hall Impresses During Final Preseason Game
Rumors swirled this week that the Minnesota Vikings could be interested in trading for then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance. After two up-and-down performances by Vikings rookie quarterback Jaren Hall through two preseason games, some believed the team needed to replace the fifth-rounder from BYU. Hall responded by putting on quite the performance in the Vikings’ third and final preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals.
Hall played the entire first half, completing 10/16 passes for 127 yards and a touchdown pass. He came out of the gates hot, leading the Vikings on a 13-play, 75-yard touchdown drive to begin the game. Hall showed off his arm and legs on the drive, getting the team down to the Cardinals’ 10-yard line. From there, fellow rookie running back DeWayne McBride took over, plunging into the endzone three plays later to give the Vikings a 7-0 lead.
The Vikings got the ball back immediately the following drive when defensive back Jay Ward forced a fumble that was recovered at the Cardinals’ 5-yard line. On first down, Hall took the shotgun snap, looked left, and found running back Abram Smith open in the flat for a touchdown pass, giving the Vikings a 14-0 lead and an energy that was lacking during the previous two preseason games.
With 2:33 left in the first half, Hall marched the Vikings down the field and into the redzone. Starting at their own 17-yard line, the Vikings got to the Cardinals’ 5-yard line following gains of 19, 14, 21, and 15 through the air. Facing third-down at the Cardinals’ 5-yard line, Hall thought that he saw an alley to step up and try running into the endzone for a touchdown. Unfortunately, the hole closed up and he was sacked for a three-yard loss. The Vikings would settle for a field goal and took a 17-3 lead into halftime.
Like most rookies, Hall had some struggles throughout the first half. But he showed many more positives and definitely took a step forward in his development on Saturday. On top of his passing, he added four runs for 15 yards. Head coach Kevin O’Connell has to feel good following the performance and will be looking forward to Hall’s future.