Leeds head coach Brian McDermott refused to criticise his players for allowing Widnes back into the game, after they had built up a comfortable half-time lead on Monday.
The Rhinos led 30-6 at the break, but the Vikings closed to within eight points by the hour mark before the home side pulled away to seal a 42-22 success.
“There were a couple of things involved in the second half, not least Widnes’ desire to get back into the game,” said McDermott.
“But we were running at 40 percent in the second half and the last thing we needed to do was give them an invite back into the game.
“Credit to Widnes – they made it a contest, but had we done things differently they never would have been able to make it a contest.
“We found ourselves in a situation where we were fighting for the game and credit to our players – they showed some maturity and when they got the chance they got over to score a try.
“I won’t get on the players’ backs about the second half – it made it interesting and entertaining – but the most pleasing thing is that we were very good and very clinical in the first half.”