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NFL Week 8: Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers prediction, preview, team news and more

Can Packers RB Aaron Jones return to the lineup for an important NFC North battle?
Can Packers RB Aaron Jones return to the lineup for an important NFC North battle?
ANALYST
Modified 29 Oct 2020, 03:58 IST
Preview
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The Minnesota Vikings travel to Wisconsin this weekend to face off against their longstanding division rivals, the Green Bay Packers. The teams matched up once before this season, with the Packers defeating the Vikings 43-34 in Week 1.

The Vikings (1-6) had a much-needed bye in Week 7, as their season has unfolded in a way many would not have expected. The last time they were on the field was in Week 6 against the Atlanta Falcons, and did not have much success containing QB Matt Ryan and WR Julio Jones. Minnesota tallied a couple of scores while the game was in hand for Atlanta, making the final score of 40-23 more respectable.

The Packers (5-1) come into this divisional clash having righted the ship last Sunday against the Houston Texans, soundly defeating them 35-20. QB Aaron Rodgers peppered WR Davante Adams with targets in that one—Adams finished with a very impressive 13 catches for 196 yards with 2 touchdowns. 


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Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers Head-To-Head

Minnesota and Green Bay have faced off many times over the years, with the Packers holding the edge 62-53-3 in the all-time series.

Including their triumph in Week 1, Green Bay has defeated Minnesota in three straight clashes.

This is a meeting between two of the NFL's historic franchises. The Packers won the first two editions of the Super Bowl in the 1960s, while the Vikings went to four Super Bowls in the late-1960s and 1970s.


Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers Team News

The Minnesota Vikings were not expected to be last-place in the NFC North towards the end of October, and may be looking to sell off a few pieces for future draft picks. Last week, they traded the recently acquired DE Yannick Ngakoue to the Baltimore Ravens, after only having him on the team since August 31st.

Luckily for the Vikings, RB Dalvin Cook appears to be close to full health after missing the Atlanta game, as he returned to practice Wednesday.

The Green Bay Packers also have their eyes focused on backfield health, as RB Aaron Jones missed last week’s game against the Texans due to a calf issue. In his place, RB Jamaal Williams filled in admirably, rushing for 77 yards on 19 carries with a touchdown. Jones was a DNP for Green Bay’s practice session on Wednesday.


Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers Projected Starters

Minnesota Vikings

QB: Kirk Cousins

RB: Dalvin Cook

WR: Adam Theilen, Justin Jefferson, Bisi Johnson

TE: Kyle Rudolph

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Green Bay Packers

QB: Aaron Rodgers

RB: Aaron Jones(Q), Jamaal Williams

WR: Davante Adams, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Malik Taylor

TE: Robert Tonyan


Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers Prediction

Green Bay figures to get Minnesota’s very best shot in this game, considering that the Vikings are coming off a bye, and QB Kirk Cousins is coming off a shaky start in his previous outing. Minnesota still has considerable offensive talent, and the key for them will be keeping the pocket clean for Cousins against the consistent pressure applied by Green Bay LB Preston Smith and LB Za’Darius Smith. 

Prediction: The scale tilts well towards the Packers’ favor if Aaron Jones is able to return to this game, but Minnesota will keep this interesting until the very end. Aaron Rodgers will make a couple more plays down the stretch than Kirk Cousins will, giving them the narrow victory.

Packers 34, Vikings 28.

Published 29 Oct 2020, 03:58 IST
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