Vikings vs. Bears – Less Obvious Keys to Victory

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After successfully shellacking the Oakland Raiders, the Minnesota Vikings have a crucial game coming up fast. As Vikings radio announcer Paul Allen would say, it’s a division collision with the Chicago Bears. A road win would be quite the statement from the purple and gold, so let’s look at some less talked about keys to victory.

Two New (Old) Players = Advantage Vikings

Soldier Field is a brutal place to play, but the Vikings will enter the game with reinforcements. For those of you who don’t know, GM Rick Spielman decided to get the gang back together. Yes, he brought back wide receiver Laquon Treadwell and punt returner Marcus Sherels in the same day. These signings may seem like nothing more than nostalgia, but they could be just enough to give the Vikings an edge against the Bears. More on that below:

Successful ‘Quon

Laquon Treadwell gets a bad rap for dropping passes. I couldn’t agree more, but let’s not forget his other talents. Treadwell is one of the best blocking receivers in the NFL. The Vikings have clearly moved away from an aerial attack, and they need as many blockers as they can get. With gritty tight end David Morgan still out, Treadwell can fill in as a blocker and create opportunities for Dalvin Cook.

The Uncuttable

After a brief stint with the New Orleans Saints, Marcus Sherels is back in Minnesota. The Vikings lost several players in their first few games, and they came calling for his services earlier this week. As most fans know, Sherels is an elusive punt returner and decent emergency cornerback. Some of his best games have come against the Bears, so let’s hope he mauls ‘em again on Sunday. Divisional matchups tend to be close, so scoring off a punt return would put the Vikings in a great position to win.

Lastly, Cook’s Compliment

You’d have to be blind to not notice Dalvin Cook these past three weeks. He’s been healthy (knock on wood) and leads the league in rushing yards. That said, fans might not be noticing the second man on the depth chart, rookie Alexander Mattison. When called upon, the third-round pick has churned out yards and made defenders miss. Cook can’t be the only one taking pressure off of Cousins, so I expect the Vikings to use Mattison as another weapon on third downs.

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