While the single-season rushing record might be out of reach, Adrian Peterson can still lead the Minnesota Vikings to the playoffs as they take on a Green Bay Packers squad eyeing the NFC’s No. 2 spot Sunday afternoon at Mall of American Field.
A win locks down the No. 6 seed for the Vikings, while a victory for Green Bay hands them a first-round bye and home game. Should the Packers lose, they will play the Vikings again in the first round next week at Lambeau.
Minnesota is riding a three-game wining streak after upsetting the Houston Texans 23-6 on the road. Peterson appeared human and only gained 86 rushing yards, and the Vikings lucked out when Houston running back Arian Foster was taken out due to an irregular heartbeat.
The Vikings defense also held the Texans in check, allowing only two field goals, a 1-for-11 conversion rate on third down, and forcing two turnovers.
Minnesota hopes to repeat their stalwart performance against a Green Bay offense that vanquished the Tennessee Titans 55-7 last week.
Aaron Rodgers has returned to MVP form, and completed 27 of his 38 passes for 342 yards and three touchdowns, along with a rushing score. The Packers totaled four touchdowns on the ground, with running back Ryan Grant netting two scores and 80 yards on 20 carries.
Receiver James Jones had his first 100-yard receiving game of the season, making seven catches including a 12-yard touchdown reception.
The game begins at 4:25 p.m. EDT and will be shown by FOX, or watch a live stream online by purchasing NFL Sunday Ticket Max.
Betting Odds: Green Bay is favored by 3.5 points
Over/Under: 46 points
Prediction: Both teams are clearly motivated, but Green Bay has an edge with Rodgers. The Vikings need quarterback Christian Ponder to avoid turnovers, which will give Peterson enough time to break through the Packers frontline. Still look for Green Bay to inch out a close victory.
Predicted Score: Green Bay 30, Minnesota 24