Except early in the fourth quarter, when he fired a 15-yard pass in double coverage that sure-handed tight end Kyle Rudolph hauled in to give the Vikings their highest score of the season.
After finishing 9-7 in coach Mike Munchak’s first season and missing the playoffs by a tiebreaker, the Titans have regressed in year two. They entered the game with a league-most 151 points allowed, and for all the good their two turnovers did their tackling was befitting of a team that was second-to-last in the NFL in yardage allowed through the first quarter of the season.
Harvin’s second score put the seal on this one, a highlight-reel catch and run to add to his already-impressive collection of video clips. Grabbing a quick swing pass at the line of scrimmage, Harvin used the same hesitation move twice to get overeager defenders to fly past him before bouncing into the end zone.
Antoine Winfield picked off an underthrow by Hasselbeck early in the second quarter at the Titans 34-yard line, setting up Blair Walsh’s first of three field goals.
The turnover came at a price for the Vikings, because rookie safety Harrison Smith was ejected after a tussle between the two teams at the end of the play. One of the officials tugged Smith away from the pile, and Smith responded by shoving him, drawing an automatic 15-yard penalty and the dreaded disqualification.
The Vikings put enough pressure on Hasselbeck the rest of the game that the absence of one of their best players in the secondary hardly mattered. When he did get the ball out, it often sailed high or wide past his receiver.