Vikings Will See 2 Old Friends vs. Chiefs

Agency Team
Kansas City Chiefs running back Jerick McKinnon (1) warms up before a NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023 at EverBank Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla. The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 17-9. © Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union / USA TODAY NETWORK.

The Minnesota Vikings haven’t lost three home games to begin a season since 2020, and in that season, no fans were present due to the coronavirus pandemic. Before that, the last time Minnesota lost its first three home games (with fans in attendance) was in 1972, so home supremacy has persisted for the Vikings for decades.

Vikings Will See 2 Old Friends vs. Chiefs

And to avoid three losses out of the gate at U.S. Bank Stadium, the Vikings draw the Kansas City Chiefs this weekend, the reigning Super Bowl champions. The Chiefs are favored to win by four, and the Vikings will need a cleaner game than the previous four weeks to achieve their second win of the season.

Along the way, Minnesota will face two former Vikings on the Chiefs current roster, and these are those men.

Blake Bell (TE)

Bell played for the Vikings during the memorable 2017 campaign. He arrived in Minnesota after two seasons in San Francisco and tallied 3 catches as a Viking for 19 yards.

See 2 Old Friends
Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports.

An Oklahoma alumnus, Bell has spent time with five NFL franchises in nine seasons, including the 49ers (2015-2016), Vikings (2017), Jacksonville Jaguars (2018), Chiefs (2018, 2021-present), and Dallas Cowboys (2020).

He’s received 3 targets from Patrick Mahomes this season, tallying 2 receptions for 12 yards. In his career, Bell has produced 62 catches for 653 yards and 2 touchdowns. The man is also a Super Bowl champion, although he was inactive during the Super Bowl last year against the Philadelphia Eagles when Kansas City prevailed, 38-35.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports.

He’s the Chiefs TE3 behind Travis Kelce and Noah Gray — or the Johnny Mundt on Kansas City’s roster.

Jerick McKinnon (RB)

A few years before the Minnesota Vikings drafted a man nicknamed JJets, the team employed another iteration of a Jet — Jerick McKinnon.

Nov 19, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Jerick McKinnon (21) carries the ball during the third quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at U.S. Bank Stadium. Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

Minnesota utilized McKinnon in various RB2 capacities from 2014 to 2017, a scatback of sorts who experienced playing time when injuries to Adrian Peterson and Dalvin Cook arose. And at the time, it seemed McKinnon had the talent to serve as a full-time RB1, mainly because of his speed.

The Chiefs have tapped into McKinnon’s core strength — speed in open space and acumen for receiving the ball. Kansas City traded game-changing playmaker Tyreek Hill to the Miami Dolphins in 2022 for a haul of picks and alleviation from Hill’s would-be gaudy contract. That enabled more McKinnon usage en route to last year’s Lombardi hoist.

Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports.

McKinnon is now interwoven in a Chiefs running back committee featuring Isaiah Pacheco and Clyde Edwards-Helaire. The man hasn’t been used much on offense in 2023, registering 13 touches for 67 yards,

However, Jet is always capable of a monster performance — perhaps versus the team that drafted him.

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