Arizona Cardinals at Minnesota Vikings, 1p.m. EST
Kick off your Sunday with this stellar matchup between a pair of 2015 playoff teams. Their offensive styles couldn’t be further apart, but they both know how to rack up W’s. This game doubles as a potential battle for a wildcard playoff spot, depending on how division races shake out, and as a playoff matchup preview. We were one Vikings field goal away from seeing this matchup last year.
Keys to the Game
The Vikings bring a strong running game to the table with hall of famer Adrian Peterson as well as super athletic backup Jerick McKinnon. Arizona’s best chance to beat Minnesota will involve slowing down that running game. If they’re able to keep the Vikings in second and third and long all day, it will force Teddy Bridgewater to throw the ball and giving Arizona a chance to bring the heat with Chandler Jones. Arizona’s pass rush and talented secondary pose problems for Bridgewater.
Containing the Cardinals’ explosive offense is going to prove difficult. The Vikings will need to take advantage of opportunities to force turnovers and protect the ball on offense. They won’t survive if they give Arizona extra possessions. Couple that with a running game that can dominate time of possession and keep the Arizona offense on the sidelines and the VIkings will have a recipe for success. Arizona can’t score if they don’t have the ball.