Vikings Can Do Something They’ve Never Done in Next 2 Weeks

Jefferson Makes His
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Hoping to regain momentum from October and early November, the Minnesota Vikings embark on back-to-back road games at AFC opponents.

Vikings Can Do Something They’ve Never Done in Next 2 Weeks

Minnesota travels to Las Vegas for a date with the Raiders this weekend and Cincinnati in Week 15 for a showdown with the Bengals.

Never Done
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And if the Vikings win both matchups — that seems like a true toss-up at the moment — they’ll make a little franchise history. Minnesota has never won back-to-back road games versus AFC opponents in successive weeks.

Playing consecutive road games at AFC stadiums is a rarity for the Vikings, as NFL schedule-makers tend to space out such matchups during a given season. But not this year.

Vikings May Have First
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In 2021, the Vikings played the Baltimore Ravens and Los Angeles Chargers in back-to-back weeks, both contests on the road. Mike Zimmer’s team lost a heartbreaker to the Ravens in Maryland and rebounded by toppling the Chargers thereafter, arguably the club’s best win of 2021.

Before that, Minnesota lost two AFC road games in consecutive weeks during the 2003 season. Longtime Vikings fans will remember the two-game skid quite well: Mike Tice and the gang lost to the San Diego Chargers, led by Doug Flutie. Then, the Vikings fell to Rick Mirer and the Raiders, marking two losses against reclamation quarterbacks far past their primes.

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And in 1996, Dennis Green’s Vikings dropped games to AFC opponents on the road on November 10th and 17th, to the Seattle Seahawks (then playing in the AFC) and Oakland Raiders, respectively. Those games marked the first time in franchise history that the Vikings were scheduled for back-to-back AFC games in two weeks.

In this latest AFC-happy installment, the Vikings are close to desperate if reaching the postseason is the goal. Minnesota began the season 1-4 and lost its best player, Justin Jefferson, in Week 5. The season seemed kaput. The squad responded by winning five straight, all without Jefferson, and the playoff probability soared because the wins occurred versus NFC teams. Vikings fans were flying high.

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But then the losing started and aligned directly with the bye week’s commencement. Minnesota has used the bye to determine a starting quarterback after Joshua Dobbs floundered against the Chicago Bears with four interceptions. Head coach Kevin O’Connell is expected to announce the QB1 on Wednesday.

Thereafter, it’ll be up to that man to lead the Vikings to victory, and if they win the next two games, it’ll make a little Vikings history.

Minnesota is 5-3 (.625) versus AFC teams — home and away — on O’Connell’s watch.


Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.

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