Monday, January 22, 2018

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

In Week 16 the (11-3) Minnesota Vikings travel to Wisconsin to take on the (7-7) Packers in Green Bay. The 2017 NFC North champions have already clinched a playoff berth, but winning this week would assure the Vikings a first-round bye.

The Vikings are looking good from a health standpoint, especially for this late in the season.

Green Bay, meanwhile, is dealing with multiple notable injuries. They’ll be without star quarterback Aaron Rodgers and leading receiver Davante Adams and could be without starting linebackers Nick Perry and Clay Matthews. Also, did I mention the Packers have officially been eliminated from playoff contention?

Even so, with things trending upward for the Vikings and the Packers being kicked while they’re down, it doesn’t mean Green Bay won’t try to play spoiler Saturday night. Let’s take a look at how the teams stack up by the numbers.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Minnesota Vikings are looking like a pretty healthy squad considering it’s Week 16.

Cornerback Tramaine Brock is the only Viking listed as out for Saturday’s game. He did not practice this week due to a foot injury. Meanwhile, starting safety Andrew Sendejo has battled injuries throughout the season and is listed as questionable. His backup, Anthony Harris, has played well when called into action and could see some playing time Saturday if Sendejo is unable to play.

Nickel cornerback Mackensie Alexander missed last week’s game against the Bengals with a rib injury. However, Alexander practiced in full Thursday so he appears to be good to go.

Starting left tackle Riley Reiff is working his way back from an ankle injury he suffered two weeks ago in the Carolina Panthers game. Rashod Hill has been Reiff’s replacement. Will Reiff be able to return for his first Vikings/Packers game at Lambeau Field as a member of the purple? According to Pioneer Press writer Chris Tomasson the team is hopeful, but don’t expect the Vikings to push it if he’s not 100%.

The Packers, meanwhile, will be without their star quarterback and leading receiver. Aside from missing their two offensive studs in Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams, they may also be without some key defenders. Starting linebacker Nick Perry is listed as doubtful and Clay Matthews is questionable. Starting cornerback Davon House is also listed as questionable, as is starting right guard Jahri Evans. Both would be significant losses for the Packers if they are unable to play.

Last week the Vikings offense took advantage of Cincinnati’s injuries on defense, particularly at linebacker. The group was able to open up holes all day in the passing game, especially for running backs Latavius Murray and Jerick McKinnon.

Here’s a look at the injury reports for each team.

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Graphic designed by Brett Anderson

Drew Mahowald and BJ Reidell invite Zach Jacobson of CheeseheadTV on the show to break down Saturday night’s NFC North clash between the Vikings and Packers.

Episode 146 is proudly sponsored by BlackStack Brewing, SoCom Creative and Can Can Wonderland.

PRIMARY TALKING POINTS

  1. Intro: The Agenda
  2. Packers Offense: Hundley’s development
  3. Packers Defense: Dom Capers’ struggles as defensive coordinator
  4. Twitter Questions: Passing of the Torch? Does Drew need a haircut? How could Hundley hurt the Vikings?
  5. Game Picks

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purpleJournal podcast

My name is Joe Johnson and I’m the owner of purplePTSD.com and now VikingsTerritory.com!  First I would like to say that I am beyond excited to be working with the amazing fellas at VT, but also that I’ll be working with a site that has one of the most loyal and awesome reader bases around! If you’re not familiar with purplePTSD, we’ve been around since mid-2015 and really try to post as many POV’s as possible to represent the wide spectrum of views that exist in Vikings fandom (I mean, some people still like Childress… Go figure).

While it hasn’t been broadcast very much, if, at all, VikingsTerritory.com merged with purplePTSD.com a few months ago as the two sites seemed to have a lot of things in common in terms of goals and growth, while also really having their own distinct personalities. As we approach the new year, we’ve been working hard on ensuring that our readers look at our sites as more than just a place to read news or opinions (which is obviously still very important), but also a place where people can listen/watch original Vikings content, hang out with other Vikings fans and also find tickets to the games (home or away) or merchandise.

To ensure that we are bringing you as wide a range of views and content as possible we’ve decided to start cross-promoting some aspects of each site with the other! So, that’s where today’s episode of the purpleJOURNAL Podcast comes in! The show is hosted by me, Joe Johnson, a lifelong Vikings fan who represents the more emotional side of the fanbase. Luckily, that is offset by the co-hosts of the show the first of which is Joe Oberle, an incredibly accomplished writer who is a senior writer (and senior, period) for purplePTSD.com as well as TheSportPost.com. He has a press pass and stops down to Winter Park every Wednesday before we record the show! Our second co-host is Luke Braun, another senior writer from purplePTSD.com and co-host of the Pocket Protectors podcast over on the ClimbingthePocket Network. Luke is our analytical mastermind, who loves to look at the numbers behind the game and what they mean.

So without further ado…

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After a mic-related false start last week, Bump & Run returns, buoyed by determination and some electrical tape.

This week, I’m popping champagne to celebrate the NFC North title and the demise of the Packers. We bask in schadenfreude after Green Bay is officially eliminated from the playoffs, reliving the exact moment it happened and discussing what it means for the team. Then, we take a look at the Vikings/Packers game and discuss how much it actually means at this point.

Plus, I examine the three most common criticisms of Case Keenum, and attempt to alleviate the concerns of Vikings fans. Of course, I end with a desperate plea to enjoy the season, because no matter what happens, it’s been a blast so far.

Also I wear a Bob Ross shirt.