3 matchups the Vikings need to win in Week 9 vs. the Falcons

Which in-game matchups will determine the outcome of Sunday's matchup for the Minnesota Vikings?
Atlanta Falcons running back Bijon Robinson
Atlanta Falcons running back Bijon Robinson / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages
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2. T.J. Hockenson vs. The middle of the field

With Vikings rookie quarterback Jaren Hall getting his first career start this weekend, veteran tight end T.J. Hockenson really needs to step up.

Hockenson has been on a tear lately, and he will need to continue his hot streak on Sunday if Minnesota hopes to get the win.

Hockenson works best when he's in the middle of the field, and with his large frame, he will undoubtedly be a primary target for the inexperienced rookie to throw too often.

Easy passes up the middle are exactly what Hall needs to get his feet wet, and he's lucky enough to have one of the best tight ends in the business on his side.

Hockenson will need to do more of his own work this week in order to help Hall get comfortable, as Minnesota isn't going to have the luxury of Kirk Cousins hitting tight windows and throwing players open.

If the Vikings offense wants to get anything going against Atlanta this weekend, it's going to start with Hockenson and his maneuvering of the middle of the field.