Coming off a loss and needing a win in a big spot – this is nothing new for the Vikings and this is nothing this Vikings team hasn’t done already.
Yes, the Vikings sit at 11-3 and have already won the NFC North. But after 2 ugly losses in their past 3 games, the squeeze is on as the Vikings try to maintain their hold on the NFC’s #2 seed against a hard-charging Philadelphia Eagles team.
In order to hold off the Eagles and secure a bye in the 1st round of the playoffs, the first order of business for the Vikings is to win this week in a big spot – at division rival Chicago on Monday Night Football.
Trends are working against the Vikings right now. They’ve lost 2 consecutive games on the grass and in prime time – at Arizona in Week 13 and at Carolina in 15. But while those trends must not be ignored, there’s another trend that works in the Vikings favor that is just as relevant.
The Vikings have been great in bounce back games over the past 2 seasons. In fact, the last time the Vikings lost 2 consecutive games was back in Weeks 1 and 2 of the 2008 season. After dropping season-opening contests at Green Bay and then at home to Indianapolis in 2008, the Vikings bounced back in Week 3 to defeat the Carolina Panthers, a team that eventually went on to win 12 games.
And after each of their first 2 losses this year, the Vikings have bounced back in resounding fashion the following weeks – in big games. Consider…
– Loss #1 for the Vikings came in Week 7 at Pittsburgh. The following week, QB Brett Favre and Co. marched into Lambeau Field in front of a huge national audience and defeated the Green Bay Packers 38-26.
— Loss #2 came at Arizona in Week 13. The following week, the Vikings headed back home and hosted the Cincinnati Bengals, who at the time had the AFC’s 2nd best record. Everyone said it was gut-check time for the Vikings. Well, the Vikings guts checked out well as they dominated the Bengals and won by a 30-10 count.
Now after their 3rd loss, an ugly 26-7 affair at Carolina, the Vikings find themselves in another big spot and in another bounce back game in need of a win.
Been there, done that.
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