This Saturday, the Vikings have yet another chance to secure first place in the NFC North. With a win over Jeff Saturday’s 4-8-1 Indianapolis Colts, the Vikings could finally call themselves division winners, a title that has been evading them for the past 2 weeks.
The Vikings are coming off a terrible game against Detroit, as they lost 34-23 in their own stadium – but the Colts have an even worse taste in their mouths as they come into Minnesota having lost their last 3 matchups.
The Vikings have the worst defense in the league in terms of yards allowed as they have gifted offenses an astonishing 403 yards per game. It is very hard to win football games when you make it so easy for the offense to move the ball down the field, but the Vikings may catch a break this weekend as the Colts have been struggling to move the ball all season, ranking 25th in offensive yards per game. The Colts’ offense also has a very hard time keeping the ball out of defenders’ hands. Indianapolis has the worst turnover margin in the league, and that should excite the Vikings’ opportunistic defense as they average 1.5 takeaways per game.
But if the Vikings want to defeat Saturday on Saturday, they need to capitalize on offense which has been a problem area for them in recent weeks. The Vikings have the 8th most passing yards per game so far this season (mostly thanks to Justin Jefferson) but the Colts are plenty equipped to stifle the Vikings’ air attack. Allowing the 3rd fewest Passing yards per game, the secondary core of Stephon Gilmore, Rodney McLeod, and Kenny Moore has been very difficult to pick apart all year. Despite allowing a high complexion percentage, this secondary has consistently been able to rally to the ball and minimize yardage gains on pass plays.
This Colts’ defense certainly isn’t perfect though, and the Vikings should be looking to feed Dalvin Cook and commit hard to the run game. The Colts allow over 126 rushing yards per game, and while the Vikings’ ground game hasn’t been anything revolutionary this season, Dalvin Cook has shown that he is capable of dominating a defense, and the probable return of offensive line powerhouses Cristian Darrisaw and Garrett Bradbury certainly give Minnesota good reason to test Indianapolis’ run defense.
The Colts have defeated the Vikings in their last 6 meetings dating back to 2000, but Minnesota will be looking to exact some revenge this weekend. The NFC North crown is teasing the Vikings at this point, and they will be hoping to capitalize on a golden opportunity to rightfully claim it in Minnesota against a notably uninspiring Colts side on Saturday.