Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers: 5 keys to victory

Nov 22, 2015; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (5) against the Green Bay Packers at TCF Bank Stadium. The Packers defeated the Vikings 30-15. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 22, 2015; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (5) against the Green Bay Packers at TCF Bank Stadium. The Packers defeated the Vikings 30-15. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports /
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How can the Minnesota Vikings go into Wisconsin to play the Green Bay Packers and win on Sunday Night Football’s week 17 contest for the NFC North title?

There hasn’t been a bigger game this year for the Minnesota Vikings than their week 17 game against the Green Bay Packers. Not only is head coach Mike Zimmer looking for his first win over the Packers, but the NFC North championship is on the line as well as the opportunity to host a game in the Wild Card round of the playoffs.

For Minnesota to win this game, they’ll have to play better than the first time these two teams met up this season. Not only that, but Minnesota is entering this game on a 2 game winning streak while the Packers are coming off a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Arizona Cardinals.

Here are the five things that must happen for Minnesota on Sunday Night Football:

  • RUSH THE PASSER!  This is the most important thing for the Vikings to do this year. Like Minnesota, the Packers offensive line has been decimated by injuries and they have backups all over the place. Everson Griffen, Brian Robison and the rest of the defense needs to take advantage of that.
  • Grind out the clock. You don’t want to trade possessions with the Green Bay Packers. Instead, have Adrian Peterson handle the ball early and often and let that play clock tick down to almost nothing before snapping the ball. Let Teddy Bridgewater work a hard count and try to get some offsides penalties as well.
  • More from The Viking Age

    Don’t rely on Blair Walsh.

    Last week, the Minnesota Vikings scored 49 points against the New York Giants. And that’s great, except that 19 of those points came from the leg of the kicker. Scoring touchdowns in the red zone will be a must, as will converting third down opportunities, against a more opportunistic Packers defense.

  • Play a (mostly) conservative game offensively.  While it isn’t pretty, short passes and pounding the ball with the running game is the strength of the Minnesota offense. Still, that doesn’t mean that the team shouldn’t take some shots. The Vikings found some success going vertical a couple of times last week and that needs to keep happening.
  • Keep composed.  For a lot of the young guys on the team, this will be the biggest game that they’re ever played in. Still, Mike Zimmer will have to prepare the Minnesota Vikings for this game so that they don’t feel overwhelmed by a division title game in prime time heading into the playoffs.
  • Those are the five things that must happen for the Minnesota Vikings to walk out of Green Bay the NFC North champions. Do you have any other keys to victory you’d like to add? Do you disagree with some of the keys listed above? Be sure to discuss them in the comments below.