Welcome to game day Saturday, everybody! We’re less than an hour away from kickoff at U.S. Bank Stadium, where our Minnesota Vikings will take another shot at clinching their first NFC North title since 2017 as they face the Indianapolis Colts, a franchise that they haven’t beaten in a quarter of a century.
(Seriously, it’s been 25 years since the Vikings last beat the Colts. Peyton Manning was still at the University of Tennessee. It was that long ago.)
Here’s everything you need to get up to speed on today’s game.
Date and Time: Saturday, 17 December 2022, noon Central time
Location: U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Television Coverage: KSTP-5 in the Twin Cities area, WXIN-59 in the Indianapolis area, NFL Network nationwide
Radio Coverage: Vikings Radio Network, SiriusXM Channels 121 and 383 (Vikings feed), SiriusXM Channel 88 (national feed), SiriusXM App Channel 820
Streaming Coverage: NFL.com, NFL app, NFL+
Line: Vikings -3.5, Over/Under 47.5
Chris’ Prediction: Vikings 27, Colts 17
1) Get some pressure on Matt Ryan - The Colts’ offensive line has been horrible this year, as our friends from Stampede Blue informed us. The Vikings have gotten little to no pressure on opposing quarterbacks for weeks now, and this is an opportunity for them to, hopefully, get right. There’s a reason the Colts have scored the second-fewest points in the league this year, and the Vikings absolutely can’t let them get healthy at their expense.
2) Take what the defense gives you - The running game has been a disaster over the past couple of weeks, but the return of Christian Darrisaw will hopefully help with that. Justin Jefferson is going to see a lot of Stephon Gilmore in this one, so the Vikings might have to look elsewhere more frequently. Jefferson will get his, but it can’t become a fixation for Kirk Cousins and company.
3) Don’t get overconfident - Yes, the Colts are a struggling team, but this Vikings team isn’t in a position to take anything for granted. They have the Niners nipping at their heels for the #2 seed in the NFC and might have to run the table the rest of the way in order to hold them off. This team needs to take care of business, wrap up the NFC North, and continue to try to get some momentum going into the postseason.
Know the Foe: Stampede Blue
That should be everything you need to be ready for today’s contest, folks. As always, we start a new Open Thread at the beginning of every quarter, so keep an eye out for those and keep things moving along accordingly.
Here’s hoping that, in about three hours or so, we’ll be able. . .finally. . .to talk about how awesome it is to win the NFC North again and make our return to the playoffs official.