Brian O’Neill facing his toughest challenge of the season vs. Panthers

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Brian O'Neill
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Brian O'Neill /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) Brian O’Neill – Minnesota Vikings /

Vikings -3.5. 4-7. 87. Sunday, Nov 29. 60. FOX. 4-6. 12 PM CT

Brian O’Neill needs to play well for the Minnesota Vikings to win in Week 12.

The Minnesota Vikings face a do-or-die game in relation to their playoff hopes when they entertain the Carolina Panthers in Week 12. Head coach Mike Zimmer will be looking for a reaction from his roster following their disappointing home loss to the Cowboys during what should be another close game if the betting line is any indication.

Carolina is coming into the contest on the back of an eye-catching shutout win over the Detroit Lions, which ended a concerning five-game losing streak. This will also see former Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater turn out against his old team after making strides regarding a knee injury that kept him out of their Week 11 victory.

There should be an increased sense of urgency from Minnesota’s perspective. But the Panthers should be ignored at their peril. They’ve been competitive against some top teams this season without quite getting over the line in close games and they have some dynamic playmakers on both sides of the ball who can make things happen at the drop of a hat.

One such player is going to give Minnesota’s standout offensive tackle Brian O’Neill arguably his toughest test of the season.

Brian Burns is an explosive defensive end who is coming of age before our very eyes this season. He was relentless against the Lions during a dominant win was a further boost to his reputation and the former first-round pick is currently leading all players at his position in NFC Pro Bowl votes.

O’Neill has been playing at a high standard himself, but keeping Burns quiet is going to be a monumental task.