MINNEAPOLIS -- Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks needed more than three quarters to warm up in Minnesota on Sunday, and their quest to avenge last year's Super Bowl loss was nearly frozen before it began.
However, the Vikings, after gritting through a grind-it-out wild-card game, booted their chance to beat the two-time defending NFC champions.
Blair Walsh's 27-yard field goal attempt into the frigid wind hooked left with 22 seconds remaining and handed the Seahawks a 10-9 victory over the stunned Vikings in below-zero weather that tied for the third-coldest NFL game on record.
"A lot of people would've folded up and said, 'That's it,' but we've got a team full of fighters," Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman said.
The Seahawks (11-6) didn't score until Wilson's short touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin early in the fourth quarter. A fumble by Adrian Peterson on the next possession set up a field goal by Steven Hauschka.
The Vikings (11-6) took the ball at their 39-yard line for the deciding drive with 1:42 left and, aided by a pass interference penalty on Kam Chancellor, drove deep into Seattle's territory. After the Vikings drained the clock for a seemingly inevitable win, Walsh missed the winner after making all three of his earlier attempts.
"That's called grace," Chancellor said. "That's all it is."
Walsh became the fourth Vikings kicker to miss a field goal in the past 20 postseasons. Morten Andersen had a 27-yard field goal blocked in the 2004 wild-card round, Gary Anderson missed a 38-yard field goal wide left in the 1998 NFC Championship Game, and Eddie Murray missed a 48-yarder in the 1997 wild-card round.
Seattle will play next weekend at Carolina, where the Panthers had a first-round bye in mid-50s weather.
"I think we were fortunate that we got the win," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "A lot of those times, guys make those kicks. There's a high percentage that they make them, but you've still got to do it."
Walsh didn't hide. Holder Jeff Locke had the laces turned in instead of out, but there were no excuses to be made.
"You're confident, but you never think that you have it or take it for granted," Walsh said in the locker room postgame. "I just didn't put a swing on it that would be acceptable by anybody's standards."
With players huddled around heaters on the shaded side of the stadium, the Seahawks were subdued for much of the game. Trailing 9-0 with 13 minutes left, Wilson almost took a huge loss on first down, when he fumbled a shotgun snap he wasn't ready for. But the guy Vikings coach Mike Zimmer called "Houdini" earlier this week darted right, dodged a sack and found Tyler Lockett wide open for a 35-yard completion to set up the score to Baldwin.
"Just tried to extend the play," said Wilson, who went 13-for-26 for 142 yards. "Find a way."
Chancellor, who ripped the ball away from Peterson, missed a tackle on tight end Kyle Rudolph's 24-yard reception, which let the Vikings advance to the 18 with 1:26 left. Peterson's next three carries left the Vikings a yard short of a first down.
Walsh, whose third kick was almost blocked by Sherman, jogged out for the defining moment. Then the Seahawks were celebrating an improbable win not unlike their rally past Green Bay in the NFC Championship Game last year.
"It's a chip shot," Zimmer said. "He's got to make it."
The Seahawks left their previous visit to Minnesota with a 38-7 victory Dec. 6, after pure domination on both sides of the ball left no doubt that they would be legitimate contenders to reach their third straight Super Bowl, even without the ear-splitting advantage of CenturyLink Field.
For all their skills, experience and swagger, however, the combination of conditions and a well-prepared, embarrassed-by-the-previous-performance Vikings team proved to be quite the challenge.
This was a fittingly frigid finish for Minnesota's two-year stint outdoors at the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium during construction of a new, covered, downtown stadium. For the Vikings' first outdoor postseason home game since the 1976 NFC Championship Game, Bud Grant, the grizzled coach of that team, served as an honorary captain. He strolled out for the coin flip in a Vikings cap and purple, short-sleeved polo shirt, looking ready for a round of golf.
The 88-year-old Grant got a roar of approval from the fans, most of whom were dressed in as many layers as purple replica jerseys would allow. The announcement minutes later of the minus-25 degree windchill drew an equally loud cheer.
Every mistake and break were magnified in this game, and the Vikings benefited for the majority of the first three quarters.
Punter Jon Ryan had to pick up a low snap on Seattle's first possession and, avoiding a potential block, tried to run up the middle before he was upended by Jason Trusnik well shy of a first down. Ryan landed on his face, breaking and bloodying his nose, and the Vikings turned the shortened field into their first field goal.
Wilson, who led the NFL in passer rating after racking up a remarkable 24 touchdown passes with only one interception the past seven games, was essentially reduced to a scrambler in the deep freeze.
Facing the wind in the second quarter, Wilson had Baldwin wide open behind the safeties at the goal line, but the ball hung in the air and was easily batted down. Again headed toward the open end of the stadium in the third quarter, Wilson overthrew Chase Coffman, and Trae Waynes intercepted the deflected pass to set up another Vikings field goal. Cliff Avril's roughing-the-passer penalty gave Minnesota 15 yards on that drive.
Previous record cold games for each franchise: Vikings, minus-2 degrees, Dec. 3, 1972, vs. Chicago. Seahawks, 16 degrees, Dec. 3, 2006, at Denver. ... Lockett's catch (35 yards) was the longest play of the game, followed by Rudolph's reception (24 yards). ... Seattle's 10 points were the fewest by a winning playoff team since 1997.
The Associated Press and ESPN Stats & Information contributed to this report.