Purple Reign Vikings Forecast – Week 7

With midseason fast approaching, I thought it’d be fun to test out a new Vikings segment. Being that I’m the founder of Purple Reign News, it was only fitting that I play homage to that and name this the Purple Reign Vikings Forecast.

As the name implies, this segment will include predictions for the upcoming Vikings matchup, along with some context for these predictions. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the Lions game!

Football Almanac

For anyone who missed it, the Lions last played on Monday Night Football against the Green Bay Packers. The general consensus was that there was terrible officiating (surprise surprise), and who the calls favored depends on who you talk to. Regardless of the refs, the Packers turned over the ball three times, which should almost be a guaranteed win for the opposition. Nonetheless, the Lions practically gave away the game, surrendering a late comeback to Aaron Rodgers.

Weekend Outlook – Mostly Sunny

With the mediocre play of the Lions last week and their inability to close out a game, I’m expecting the Vikings to win without having to weather a hurricane. Road games against division rivals are never guaranteed, but I believe Detroit is the weakest link in the NFC North. They are also the Vikings only northern rival that plays indoors, which is certainly a luxury as we head into a chilly fall.

Getting into the X’s and O’s, it’s advantage Vikings. Four weeks ago, Dalvin Cook was carrying the Vikings on his back. As the team distances itself from earlier drama, Diggs, Thielen, and Cousins are dancing in the rain. With a legitimate triple threat coming to Ford Field, the Detroit defense is going to have their hands full. It’s hard to predict who will be Minnesota’s top producer on Sunday, and the Lions can’t cover everyone. Detroit should prepare for a storm.

Chance of Rain, 30%

In my mind, there are two players who could thwart this forecast:

Number one is Mathew Stafford. This hasn’t been talked about much, but I would draw a close comparison between Cousins and Stafford. Both are 7+ year veterans capable of putting up big numbers, yet neither has had much success in reaching or winning playoff games. With Detroit having only a mid-tier rushing attack, the Lions will likely put the game in Stafford’s hands. It will be up to the Vikings defense to hold back the experienced quarterback.

Number two is Damon Harrison Sr., the Lions starting nose tackle. At 6’3” and 350 pounds, Harrison is the heart of the Detroit defensive line, and he’s a mismatch for almost any blocker.

Minnesota’s interior offensive line has struggled whether injured or healthy, so it remains to be seen if they can keep Harrison away from Cousins. The rest of the Lions roster isn’t too concerning, but Harrison could be the cloud on an otherwise sunny day.

Final Forecast – Vikings 20, Lions 10

Division collisions (thanks Paul Allen) are rarely high scoring, so I expect the Vikings to find the end zone twice, kick two field goals, and smother Stafford and the Detroit offense.

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