The Chicago Bears are in the midst of a 3-game losing streak and heading in the wrong direction as the NFL regular season approaches its final stretch of games.
But that doesn’t have Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress fooled as he prepares his team for its 1st game of the season against the division rivals.
“For us, [a] divisional opponent is huge,” Childress said. “It’s a great rivalry. I don’t have any illusions about getting their best shot. Divisional teams are tough to beat. We play them twice (coming up); we’ve played everybody else twice. We’ll have our hands full.”
In an unusual scheduling circumstance, the Vikings have already finished their season series with both Green Bay and Detroit, while they haven’t played the Bears once. The result is 2 games against Chicago over the next month. They’ll play at Mall of America Field this Sunday and then on December 28 the teams will battle on ESPN’s Monday Night Football at Soldier Field.
Childress told reporters at Winter Park on Monday that he has a lot of respect for the way the Bears play defense and he also said that the Chicago offense has enough pieces to cause trouble for opposing defenses.
The Vikings have been riding the hot hand of QB Brett Favre for a good part of the season, and now the Purple will face the league’s 8th-ranked passing defense. On the other side of the ball, QB Jay Cutler’s favorite target is TE Greg Olsen, and the Vikings have had their share of difficulties defending tight ends (see: Davis, Vernon and Finley, Jermichael).
Add in this week’s odd schedule because of the Thanksgiving holiday and the Vikings will need to be at their best in order to hold serve at home and take one step closer to winning the NFC North.
“We need to make sure we’re about our business,” Childress said. “With the holiday in here, we just need to take care of our business and prepare the right way this week.”
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