Seattle Seahawks vs Minnesota Vikings Preview
One team is looking to remain in contention in their division, while the other looks to keep themselves in the hunt for the playoffs when the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings square off in one of the best games of this week in the NFL. With so much on the line, which of these surging teams will have the upper hand?
Minnesota Vikings Contending In NFC North
Every year, the Green Bay Packers are expected to steamroll the NFC North division en route to the playoffs. But one of the NFL’s most storied franchises has struggled at times this campaign, and the Minnesota Vikings have swooped in and given them a run for the division’s top spot. Minnesota has won six of their last seven games, and find themselves just ahead of the Packers for right now.
Key to the Minnesota Vikings’ success has been their defense, which has not given up more than 20 points since the Vikings started their run of positive form. They have a formidable run stopping unit, and defensive backs that are capable of limiting dangerous passing attacks, and those units have teamed up nicely to shut down their opponents.
Offensively, the Vikings have hung their hat on Adrian Peterson, who has returned to form as one of the best running backs in the NFL again. Peterson’s great running combined with the impressive play of young quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has made defenses unsure as to what the Vikings want to do from play to play, making them just tough enough to stop for Minnesota to pile up the wins.
Seattle Seahawks In Playoff Position
While the Minnesota Vikings have been atop their division, the Seattle Seahawks have had to climb out of a deep hole after a slow start to the year. And while Seattle won’t be able to come back and overtake the Arizona Cardinals for first place in the NFC West, the Seahawks find themselves in the number five seed in the NFC heading into this week, but must keep winning to avoid being forced into tiebreaker scenarios.
A huge reason for the Seattle Seahawks’ turnaround has been the emergence of running back Thomas Rawls, who has filled in wonderfully for the injured Marshawn Lynch, who is himself one of the best running backs in the NFL. Rawls has been able to make defenses continue to respect the Seattle running game, allowing their offense to pass against a more spread out secondary.
Defensively, the Seahawks really haven’t been very good, especially when compared to their teams from recent seasons. If Seattle wants to beat the Vikings, they will have to be better on this side of the ball, as Minnesota has the weapons to make them pay for their shortcomings.
As a whole, both the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings need to win this game to continue their momentum and strengthen their place in the NFC playoff picture. This game will come down to which defense can better limit the explosive options on the opposing side.
By: Jason M. Sanin