We are less than an hour away from kickoff at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina. This afternoon, it’s a battle of 0-3 teams, as your Minnesota Vikings travel to take on the Carolina Panthers. Here’s everything you need to know to get up to speed on this one.
Date and Time: Sunday, 1 October 2023, noon Central time
Location: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina
Television Coverage: KMSP-9 in the Twin Cities, FOX affiliates around the country, YouTube TV Sunday Ticket
Radio Coverage: Vikings Radio Network, SiriusXM Channel 384 (Vikings feed), SiriusXM App Channel 820
Line: Vikings -4.5, Over/Under 46.5
Chris’ Prediction: Vikings 27, Panthers 20
1) Make Bryce Young uncomfortable - Young, the #1 overall pick in this past April’s NFL Draft, missed last week’s game with an ankle injury and is still adjusting to the speed of the pro game. He can’t be allowed to simply sit back in the pocket and get comfortable. The Vikings will have to get Young off his spot and force him to make plays out of rhythm. If they can’t do that, it could be a long afternoon.
2) Get aggressive on offense - The Vikings have one of the best passing attacks in the NFL, and they need to take advantage of that, particularly against a Carolina secondary that comes into this one pretty banged up. On paper, the Panthers’ defense shouldn’t be able to keep up with Justin Jefferson and company, and it’s up to Kevin O’Connell to make sure that translates onto the field.
3) Stop turning the damn ball over - Yeah, we had this one in there as the only key for last week, and the Vikings cost themselves opportunities by handing the ball to the other team. This team can’t afford to keep making mistakes, and there’s going to (hopefully) come a point where the mistakes stop. Hopefully that point comes today in Charlotte.
Know the Foe: Cat Scratch Reader
That should be everything you need to be up-to-date on this afternoon’s happenings, folks. We’ll have a brand new Open Thread for you to participate in at the start of each quarter, so keep your eyes open and the discussion moving along accordingly.
Here’s hoping that in about three hours or so we’re all back here to talk about our first victory of the 2023 NFL season.