Minnesota Vikings at Oakland Raiders: 5 keys to victory


The Minnesota Vikings will face a tough test against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, November 15, 2015.  To win, they’ll need to execute 5 crucial points.

It’s a fun time to be a Minnesota Vikings fan.  The team is on a four game winning streak, beat the Bears in Chicago for the first time in a long time, and are currently on top of the NFC North.  However, they face a tough opponent on Sunday that is also looking to make a name for themselves this season:  the Oakland Raiders.

For the Vikings to be victorious, they’ll have to play a solid game of football.  However, there are five keys to victory that I feel that Minnesota will HAVE to execute in order to win.

Here are my five keys to victory for the Minnesota Vikings against the Oakland Raiders.

  • Convert third downs.  The Vikings aren’t one of the most explosive or dynamic offenses in the NFL, so they’ll have to count on efficiency and ball control.  With Teddy Bridgewater questionable for this game, backup Shaun Hill may have to take control of the offense, which looked non-existent at the end of the Rams game when Bridgewater went out.
  • Nov 8, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper (89) and quarterback Derek Carr (4) celebrate after combining on a touchdown pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    Get pressure on Derek Carr.  Oakland’s passing game is hitting on all cylinders.  Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree are both on track to be thousand yard receivers on the year and Carr has been making some big time throws.  The Minnesota Vikings will have to force Carr to make bad decisions or make him throw before he wants to in order to help out the secondary.

  • Don’t turn the ball over.  Adrian Peterson has been having some trouble securing the football lately, but that’s not my biggest concern.  It’s 2015 and I’m worried about a 39-year-old cornerback named Charles Woodson.  He’s having an amazing season, currently tying Colts safety Mike Adams for most interception in the league (5).
  • More from The Viking Age

    Feed the beast.

    Much of the pressure of the offense should be resting on Adrian Peterson’s shoulders.  Pounding the ball at the Raiders should open up some play action and maybe even a deep ball opportunity for whichever quarterback the Vikings will have available to play.  That won’t be easy though, as Oakland allows only the 7th fewest rushing yards per game (96.9 yards per game).

  • Finish the game strong.  Oakland has outscored their opponents this season, but seem to stall out in the 4th quarter.  That is when the Raiders have scored only 50 points this season compared to their opponents 83.  If the Minnesota Vikings can put the pedal to the metal and finish strong against the Raiders, it could be the biggest key to this game.
  • What do you think?  Do you disagree with any of my keys to success?  Do you have any that you’d like to add?  Let me know in the comments below.  Meanwhile, don’t miss the Minnesota Vikings when they take on the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, November 15, 2015 at 3:15 central time.  Check your listings for time and availability.