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Preview: Vikings at Green Bay Packers

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Though there are 10 regular season games remaining for the Packers, this should be the biggest remaining game on their schedule. Still, it's not a must-win game. The NFC North becomes very tight at the top if the Packers win, but even if the Vikings build a comfortable 3 game lead in the division, they still have to contend with the 2nd half of the season. They'll have to keep winning because the Packers will not go away.

Here's how the teams matchup, official NFL rankings from NFL.com:

Team Run Offense Pass Offense Run Defense Pass Defense
Packers 13 10 12 4
Team Run Defense Pass Defense Run Offense Pass Offense
Vikings 10 20 12 13

As far as the Packers offensive strategy goes, I discussed it yesterday. I don't expect them to use RB Ryan Grant a whole lot, but they might have success running the ball if they tried. Still, the alternative is that QB Aaron Rodgers has another great game against them. In their last meeting, the Vikings had 9 QB hits and 8 sacks, but Rodgers still managed 384 yards and 2 TDs. The Vikings pass defense hasn't gotten any better since then, and they'll probably be without injured Pro Bowl CB Antoine Winfield.

I'm really looking forward to watching the Packers run defense take another shot at RB Adrian Peterson. They held him to 55 yards (2.2 yards/carry) in their last game. Back to what I said earlier about QB Brett Favre, I expect he'll have another game like he had last week in Pittsburgh. He'll have some success against them, but he won't have a repeat of his big game in Minneapolis. The return of SS Atari Bigby should make a big difference this time around. 

Packers 27, Vikings 20.