Vikings win 24-16
During the divisional round of the NFL playoffs, I stated that whoever won between the Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints would go on to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. Well, those feelings haven’t changed.
While I totally respect the Eagles defense and feel that the home-field advantage for Philadelphia could be a huge factor, Minnesota is a better all-around team than the Atlanta Falcons (who the Eagles beat last week) and should be able to come out of that game with a victory. However, it is much easier said than done.
Offensively, the Vikings will need to be smart. Philadelphia can stop even the most dynamic passing and run defenses as evidenced last week against Atlanta. Efficiency will be the key, since picking up short plays and running the ball will open up opportunities to hit a home run.
This means big games could be had by both Minnesota running backs Jerick McKinnon and Latavius Murray as well as wide receiver Adam Thielen in the passing game. But you can never count out Stefon Diggs to make a big play or pick up a clutch first down catch either.
Defensively, the Vikings just need to do what they’ve been doing all season. Stopping the run will be key since they will want to force Eagles quarterback Nick Foles to throw the ball. From there, Minnesota’s secondary will do what it does best and make plays while limiting big gains on catches.