Matt LaFleur’s first full season as head coach saw the Packers go all the way to the NFC Championship in 2019. They lost to the 49ers, but they have high hopes again this year with much of the same squad returning. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was in his usual fine form in 2019, throwing for 4,002 yards, 26 touchdowns and four interceptions. He’ll have his primary weapons in All-Pro wide receiver Davante Adams and All-Everything running back Aaron Jones back this year, as well.
On defense, Green Bay was a much-improved unit in 2019, particularly with the additions of Za’Darius and Preston Smith (no relation). They’ll be tested against a comfortable Kirk Cousins and a healthy Vikings offense.
The Vikings will have most of their offensive studs from a year ago, minus one: wideout Stefon Diggs was traded to the Bills this offseason. That means Adam Thielen will be the focus of the passing attack again, while rookie Justin Jefferson, Minnesota’s first-round wideout, will make his debut with the hope of eventually filling Diggs’ shoes.
Minnesota will look quite a bit different on defense, as several veterans and starters found new homes this offseason, including Everson Griffen, Xavier Rhodes and Linval Joseph. They added pass rusher extraordinaire Yannick Ngakoue to replace Griffen, and with Danielle Hunter, the Vikings now have one of the best pass-rushing duos in the league. Hunter has started the season on IR, however, which is a huge blow for this Vikings defense. Other than that, though, the Vikings have a clean bill of health heading into the game.
- Date: Sunday, September 13
- Time: 1:00 p.m. ET
- Location:U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Spread: Vikings -2.5
- Over/under total: 44.5
The line hasn’t moved too much for this game. The Vikings began as 3-point favorites and stayed that way until early September when the spread fell to 2.5. The over/under has moved more, starting out at 47 points before slowly trickling down to 44.5, where it is now.
NOTE: All betting trends, numbers and stats courtesy of OddsShark.
- The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Green Bay’s last 10 games.
- Green Bay is 6-1 SU in their last 7 games.
- The Packers are 7-3 SU in their last 10 games on the road.
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Green Bay’s last 5 games when playing on the road against Minnesota.
- Minnesota is 4-2 ATS in their last 6 games.
- The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Minnesota’s last 6 games.
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Minnesota’s last 6 games against Green Bay.
- Minnesota is 15-5 SU in their last 20 games at home
Analysis & Pick
The Packers swept the season series last year, including a 23-10 win in Minneapolis. It was the first time the Pack swept Minnesota since 2014, and I don’t see them doing that to the Vikings two seasons in a row. I also think the Vikings will use Dalvin Cook, who is playing for a new contract, to the fullest against a Packers defense that was exposed against the run multiple times last year.
Davante Adams will likely burn this youthful secondary a time or two, but I think Ngakoue makes the difference in this game. I see defense dominating this one, I think Ngakoue has a huge first game with his new team, and I think Cook and Cousins will do just enough, in the end, to eke out a tough win. Minnesota 20, Green Bay 17.
Pick: Vikings -2.5