D.J. Moore – WR
The Panthers have a talented trio of pass catchers with Curtis Samuel, Robby Anderson, and this speedster. D.J. Moore is the definition of a home run hitter when it comes to the wide receiver position. This cat excels at making big field-stretching grabs and is averaging 18.8 yards a catch.
The Vikings’ young cornerbacks have been up and down all season, and even if they show up in this game, Moore is going to be an extremely tough matchup. Moore possesses great speed, and while he’s only 5″11, he’s got a thick frame and is tough to bring down. The Vikings’ cannot allow him to get deep and will have to roll a safety his way on every passing down. They also need to jam him at the line of scrimmage and not let him get a clean get-off.
These things are all easier said than done, and Jeff Gladney, Cameron Dantzler, and company will need to have their best game of the season to slow him down. A better showing from the Vikings’ defensive line will also help. If they can get consistent pressure on Teddy Bridgewater and make him force the ball out earlier than he wants, that will take away Moore’s strength of getting deep. On paper, this looks like a huge mismatch in the Panthers’ favor, and the Vikings will have to plan and execute well to neutralize this dangerous weapon.