On Sunday Night Football, the Packers will travel to U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota to take on the Vikings. This Sunday Night Football matchup will kick off at 8:20 PM. ET.
The Chicago Bears have dominated the NFC North this season. With only 5 weeks remaining, every game from here on out for Minnesota and Green Bay becomes critical.
In their week 2 meeting, the Packers led the Vikings by 13 points going into the fourth quarter. Minnesota kept the game close, never allowing Green Bay to increase their lead by more than a few field goals. With less than a minute left, the Vikings scored a touchdown and completed a 2-point conversion to tie the game.
That game ultimately ended in a 27 all tie. Since that game, the Vikings and Packers have struggled to play consistently. With the Bears nearly locking down the division, the Packers and Vikings cannot afford to lose to a divisional opponent.
The Packers are 0-5 on the road this season.
Green Bay’s road woes have crushed their playoff chances. Green Bay has three home games remaining this season. If they’re planning on making a playoff run, then they’ll need to start winning games on the road starting this week.
According to NFL Stats, the Packers’ offense ranks 19th in third-down conversions. The Packers’ offense has a number of issues in 2018. Historically, under Aaron Rodgers the Green Bay offense has ranked among the league leaders. This season, however, Rodgers has struggled to carry the offense to victory.
According to NFL Stats, the Packers’ offense ranks 13th in points and 13th in yards per game. The Packers rushing offense ranks 17th in yards per game. A consistent issue throughout Rodgers’ tenure as quarterback, is a lack of a consistent ground game.
The Packers’ lack of a running game doesn’t tell the whole story. Rodger’s doesn’t appear to have the same impact in the passing game this season and that appears to be a direct result of the receiving core. Rodgers has always had several go-to receivers, and he still has Devante Adams. On the season Adams ranks 5th in receptions and 3rd in touchdowns. Outside of Adams, however, Green Bay’s offense doesn’t have much of a passing attack.
The Vikings have one last shot at the NFC North division.
Minnesota has allowed 26 sacks and 62 quarterback hits this season. Kirk Cousins is a tremendous athlete, but unlike Rodgers, Cousins excels when he’s able to remain within the pocket. Against the Bears in week 11, Cousins took some nasty shots from the Chicago pass rush.
All told, the Vikings allowed only 2 sacks against the Bears but for a loss of 16 yards. The Vikings did a lot to negate the Bears pass rush, like moving the pocket away from Khalil Mack. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough as Minnesota fell to the Bears in what could very well decide the NFC North at the end of the season.
According to NFL Stats, the Vikings defense ranks 5th in yards and 11th in points allowed per game. All five of their wins have come against inferior opponents, though. Facing a much-maligned Green Bay offense, expect the Vikings defense to show up for this game.
Packers Vs Vikings Betting Lines
This game isn’t going to end in a tie. Both teams need this game to stay competitive in the wild-card and division race. The Packers are the more desperate team, however, with their loss last week their chances have grown even slimmer. The Vikings are a strong team that still hasn’t hit their stride yet this season. This is a statement game, and with a prime-time audience, expect the Vikings to take care of business against the Packers at home.
Play: Vikings -3.5 @ BetOnline.ag