The Green Bay Packers renew their rivalry with the Minnesota Vikings at TCF Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This NFC North divisional showdown is scheduled to kickoff at 4:25 PM. ET.
Last week, the Packers suffered their worst loss of the season. Starting three weeks ago with a drubbing by the Denver Broncos, the Packers have now lost three in a row. This last loss to Detroit is arguably the worst. The first two losses came at the hands of then unbeaten Denver and still unbeaten Carolina. The Packers, under Aaron Rodgers at quarterback, almost never lose two in a row, so it seemed a sure thing to bet heavy on the Packers to destroy the lowly Lions.
The Lions were 1-7 going into Lambeau Field, where they have not won a game since the early 90’s. But its football, and on any given Sunday, any team can win, including the Lions. The Packers must now regroup and bounce back on the road from a three game losing streak.
Last week, Minnesota continued to win how they have all season. They played solid defense and ran the ball down their opponents’ throats. With the Packers losing last week, the Vikings are now in sole possession of first place in the NFC North. With a win on Sunday, the Vikings can put some distance between them and their division rival.
What’s wrong with the Packers? Usually Aaron Rodgers is a model of consistency, but over this three game losing streak, Rodgers has been fallible. Against the Lions, Rodgers threw 61times and completed 35 of those passes. He threw for 333 yards and two touchdowns on the afternoon. That’s not a very proficient day. Part of that total is because the Packers were trailing, but it’s also telling of his running game and offensive line issues. In the loss, the Packers ran the ball only 18 times for 47 yards. If the Packers offense is to rely on Rodgers entirely, then this losing streak is going to continue until they find some balance.
A big problem over this losing streak for the Packers is the lack of a pass rush. Over their last three games the Packers have not generated enough pressure to force opposing offenses into mistakes. If the Packers are going to slow down the Vikings, they’ll need to get pressure on Teddy Bridgewater.
A player to watch for the Vikings is Teddy Bridgewater. The Packers will focus most of their attention on stopping Adrian Peterson. The NFL’s leading rusher is just shy of a thousand yards for the season. The Packers run defense is in the bottom ten of the league, while the Vikings boast the number one rushing attack. But, with all the attention paid to Peterson, the Vikings will have to make some crucial throws down the field. If Bridgewater can connect for a few deep to mid-range throws down field, then the Vikings should keep the Packers defense guessing.
A player to watch this week on the Packers is James Starks. The running back will split back duties with Eddie Lacey, but Starks adds an extra element in the passing game that Lacy doesn’t have. Against the Lions, Rodgers targeted Davante Adams 21 times but only connected for 10 receptions. Rodgers needs to spread the ball around and quickly, and one way to do that is by getting Starks more involved in the passing game.
Vikings Vs Packers Week 11 Betting Lines
BetOnline.ag has the Vikings as 1 point favorites in this game. The over/under on total points scored is 44. BetOnline is our top rated NFL sportsbook at the moment. You can read our full BetOnline review here.
The Vikings and the Packers are at a crossroads for their seasons. The Vikings have finally put together a solid defense with complimentary offense to help them overtake the Packers as NFC North favorites. Expect a close game, but the Vikings behind Adrian Peterson will do enough to get the win.
Play: Vikings -1