The Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings aren't accustomed to having any of their biannual clashes be a showdown for second place.
The two franchises have combined to win 10 of the last 11 NFC North titles. Yet with the 8-3 Chicago Bears holding a commanding lead in the division, the Packers (4-5-1) and the Vikings (5-4-1) are scrambling to remain relevant in the playoff picture, even if that means trying to get in as a wild card.
The rivals fought to a 29-29 stalemate in Week 2, so Sunday night's game could have a significant effect in a potential tiebreaker scenario. Amid speculation about Mike McCarthy's future in Green Bay, the Packers' outlook once again could come down to what Aaron Rodgers can do to rescue a disappointing campaign.
Despite consistent questioning of the offense, Rodgers has thrown for 19 touchdowns with one interception. And though he could have used increased help from running back Aaron Jones, who sat out the first contest while suspended, the emerging second-year back hasn't been given 15 carries in a game this season. In all likelihood, the two-time MVP will once again need to muster some heroics to revive the Packers' postseason hopes.
Green Bay, however, has yet to win on the road this season and is 0-2 at U.S. Bank Stadium against Minnesota. And for all his ability, Rodgers stands with the second-lowest completion rate of his career (61.8 percent), though he attributed the decline in part to a number of throwaways.
Source: Read Full Article