A New Era in Vikings Rivalry Begins at Lambeau

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The Minnesota Vikings play the Green Bay Packers on Sunday afternoon, and the tilt at Lambeau is always one fans of both teams circle on the schedule. This matchup will have a different feel, though, and presents a reality we haven’t seen in more than 30 years.

A New Era in Vikings Rivalry Begins at Lambeau

Aaron Rodgers is now a New York Jet, just like his predecessor Brett Favre. That’s significant because Sunday’s matchup will be the first time a quarterback not named Rodgers or Favre hasn’t been atop the depth chart in over thirty years. While most teams deal with turnover at quarterback, the Packers have seen longevity like no other franchise in football.

A New Era in Vikings Rivalry Begins at Lambeau
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For the Vikings, it will be Minnesota that brings an established signal caller to the contest. Kirk Cousins is in his sixth season with Minnesota, the same amount of time he spent with the Washington Commanders organization. Although that isn’t close to the timeline Green Bay has seen from their quarterbacks, it is a good deal longer than any Vikings quarterback in recent memory.

Conversely, Green Bay is going through the struggles most teams face when looking to break in a new quarterback. Jordan Love is no longer a rookie, but the job is truly his for the first time in his career. Through six weeks, the Packers quarterback has led them to just a 2-4 record while looking entirely mediocre.

The opportunity for Minnesota to truly control this rivalry is in front of them. Cousins may not be involved much beyond this year, but the team built around the quarterback position for the Vikings is as good as it has been in quite some time. The wide receiver room may be among the best in the sport, and Brian Flores has a defense that was terrible in 2022, playing at a very high level.

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Coming off a win against the San Francisco 49ers at home on Monday Night Football, it will be on the Vikings to establish continuity. It’s great that they are now riding a two-game winning streak and have the ability to go on a run, but none of that matters unless the execution continues.

It’s never easy to win on the road against a divisional rival, but there’s no denying that the Vikings and Packers are in substantially different places from a competitive standpoint. Although their records aren’t too dissimilar, the talent gap between the two teams is sizable. Oddsmakers have this contest as a pick em’, but it would seem nothing short of a failure if Kevin O’Connell doesn’t see his team emerge victorious on Sunday.

Gone are the days of Favre and Rodgers being known commodities for The Pack, and gone are the days of the offense being enough to carry or overcome the rest of the team’s deficiencies. Love will feel plenty of pressure on Sunday, both figuratively and literally. How the Vikings go about making that work against him is yet to be seen, but they should have plenty of opportunities to do so.

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Green Bay hasn’t seen Love post a statistically sound game since Week 2 against the Atlanta Falcons, and the Chicago Bears in Week 1 was the only other time it has happened this year. Minnesota can help him continue his negative trend and turn the rivalry game into a rout.

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.