20 Things to Know before Ravens-Vikings

Everson Griffen
Everson Griffen

The Minnesota Vikings (3-4) venture to Maryland for a matchup with the Baltimore Ravens (5-2) in Week 9.

Here are 20 stats, facts, and things to know leading into the AFC-NFC showdown.

  1. The Vikings have reached the playoffs 55% of the time in seasons they started 3-4.
  2. The Vikings have only reached the postseason one time in franchise history when starting a season 3-5. It was 1980.
  3. Sunday’s game will be the first time the Vikings have faced Lamar Jackson.
  4. Mason Cole (C) will make his first career start as a member of the Vikings because his counterpart, Garrett Bradbury, is on the COVID list.
  5. Since the start of 2015, the Vikings are exactly average without Danielle Hunter in the lineup — 9-9.
  6. The Ravens have hosted the Vikings four times in Maryland. The only time Minnesota won was in 1998.
  7. Kirk Cousins is the NFL’s second highest-graded quarterback per Pro Football Focus, behind only Tom Brady.
  8. The Vikings lead the NFL in sacks per game.
  9. Minnesota’s defense ranks 4th in the NFL for DVOA but 20th in yards per play allowed. Weird stuff.
  10. The Ravens rank fourth in the NFL in stopping the run but last in the NFL in stopping the pass. Let’s see if the Vikings know this.
  11. The Vikings are the first team in NFL history to have fewer than six giveaways but 20+ sacks on defense through the first seven games of a season — and have a losing record to show for it.
  12. Minnesota leads the NFL in offensive holding penalties (18).
  13. The Vikings rank fifth in the league for points scored in the 1st Quarter — and 30th in points scored during the 4th Quarter.
  14. Baltimore has surrendered 10 touchdowns of 25+ yards through Week 8. This is the most in the NFL.
  15. Through seven games of the 2013 season, the Vikings scored 163 points. Through seven games of the 2021 season, the Vikings have scored 163 points.
  16. 86.7% of all Vikings offensive plays have occurred in 2021 when the score margin of the game is within 7 points.
  17. The Ravens are the NFL’s third-best team scoring touchdowns in the redzone.
  18. During the Mike Zimmer era, the Vikings are the league’s 13th-best road team.
  19. With Lamar Jackson in charge, the Ravens have lost back-to-back home games just one time.
  20. Kirk Cousins has faced Baltimore as a starter once in his career, and Washington won that game 16-10 in 2016.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).