Monday Night Football features a matchup of NFC second-place teams as the Minnesota Vikings (8-3, second in the NFC North) travel to Century Link Field to take on the Seattle Seahawks (9-2, second in the NFC West). The Vikings are a half-game behind the Green Bay Packers, who won on Sunday over the Giants. The Seahawks are also just a half-game behind the 10-2 49ers, who lost on Sunday to the Ravens. Kickoff for this one is set for 8:15 pm ET.
For the Vikings, it has been a bit of an inconsistent ride. While they have won two in a row since their 26-23 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, they haven’t exactly been dominant performances. They beat the Cowboys 28-24 and the Denver Broncos 27-23. Still, every win counts, and they need to get one in this game to stay even with the Packers.
For the Seahawks, every win is pivotal at this point. They currently sit a half-game behind San Francisco but have won their only matchup with the 49ers thus far. With so much on the line, the last week of the season when they host San Francisco could be immensely important. Still, to get to that point, they need to take the opportunity to win every game they can right now.
The Seahawks come into this one as three-point favorites playing at home. The over/under for total points scored is 50.
By The Numbers
On the offensive side, these two come in neck and neck as they are both top-10 teams in terms of points scored. The Seahawks come in sixth, averaging 26.5 points per game (26.8 at home). The Vikings are seventh, averaging 26.3 points per game (23.8 on the road).
On the defensive side, it is the Vikings that hold the advantage, ranking sixth, allowing an average of 18.6 points per game (21.2 on the road). The Seahawks are 21st, giving up 23.9 points per game (29.2 at home).
Vikings Look For Signature Win
The Vikings need every win they can get and will turn to quarterback Kirk Cousins to try to get it done. Even though he was a bit shaky to start the season, Cousins has been rather dynamic lately and will look to keep it going against the Seahawks Monday. On the season, Cousins is 226 for 320 for 2,756 yards, 21 touchdowns and just three interceptions.
Minnesota’s leading receiver has been Stefon Diggs, with 46 receptions for 880 yards and five touchdowns. Next up is running back Dalvin Cook, who has 45 catches out of the backfield for 455 yards.
Cook has also been one of the best running backs in the game this year, rushing 214 times for 1,017 yards and a whopping 11 touchdowns.
Protecting The Home Field
The Seahawks are powered by the play of quarterback Russell Wilson, who is 237 for 352 for 2,937 yards, 24 touchdowns and three interceptions. He does have 33 sacks to date, but that is partially due to his scrambling nature. He has added 53 rushes for 271 yards and an additional three touchdowns.
On the ground, the Seahawks are led by Chris Carson, who has rushed 208 times for 879 yards and four touchdowns. He also has 31 catches for 220 yards and two scores.
Through the air, the Seahawks are led by Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf, as Lockett has 63 receptions for 831 yards and six touchdowns while Metcalf has 38 catches for 630 yards and five touchdowns.
Taking Minnesota And The Points
In the past, taking Seattle at home would have been a no-brainer; however, the Seahawks have two losses this year, and they are both at home. That doesn’t mean they aren’t a dominant team, because they are, but it is saying that playing in Seattle isn’t the automatic win that everyone assumes.
The Vikings and Seahawks are pretty evenly matched. They both have dynamic weapons on the offensive side, and the defenses are more than capable. With the even matchup, I feel like this could be close throughout. Granted, some feel that Cousins is a ticking time bomb that could blow up at any point, but over the last several weeks, he hasn’t shown to be that guy this season. As a result, I am taking the Vikings and the three points in this one.