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49ers beat Vikings 34-26, Minnesota drops below .500

Dalvin Cook left the game after a hard hit in the 3rd quarter, and on Monday an MRI will show the severity of his shoulder injury.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Deebo Samuel ran for two touchdowns before leaving with an injury and Elijah Mitchell scampered for 133 yards and a score, leading the San Francisco 49ers to a 34-26 victory over the Minnesota Vikings. 

The matchup between two .500 teams fighting for wild-card spots was a highly entertaining one with six scores in the third quarter alone, including a 99-yard kickoff return score by Minnesota’s Kene Nwangwu. 

But the 49ers made just enough plays, including a fourth-down stop near the goal line midway through the fourth quarter to win their third straight following a stretch of five losses in six games.

Late in the third quarter RB Dalvin Cook was taken off the field after a rough tackle on the 4 yard mark left him shaken and unable to play. 

"I don't know, I haven't heard anything yet," Coach Mike Zimmer said in a post-game press conference. "We'll get an MRI."

The MRI is scheduled for Monday, and it is yet to be determined if Cook will return to the team this season. 

"I know Dalvin is going to bounce back," WR Justin Jefferson said. "We don't know how serious that injury is, but [we're] just keeping him in our prayers and hopefully he's OK and comes back for us."

The composure of quarterback Kirk Cousins is again under the microscope after a humiliating gaffe in a crucial part of the fourth quarter. Cousins lined up to take a snap not from his center... but from right guard Oli Udoh with the Vikings fourth and goal with less than 10 minutes remaining in the game. Running back Alexander Mattison tried to physically move his QB to the center, but the Vikings were forced to burn a crucial time out. 

Cousins then sailed a throw over the head of his receiver, turning the ball back over to the 49ers, who went on to win and move ahead in the battle for a wild card playoff spot.