September 25, 2014

ATLANTA (2-1) at MINNESOTA (1-2)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET, Fox

OPENING LINE - Falcons by 3

RECORD VS. SPREAD - Atlanta 2-1, Minnesota 1-2

SERIES RECORD - Vikings lead 16-11

LAST MEETING - Falcons beat Vikings 24-14, Nov. 27, 2011

LAST WEEK - Falcons beat Buccaneers 56-14; Vikings lost to Saints 20-9

AP PRO32 RANKING - Falcons No. 13, Vikings No. 28

FALCONS OFFENSE - OVERALL (1), RUSH (16), PASS (1).

FALCONS DEFENSE - OVERALL (27T), RUSH (19), PASS (25).

VIKINGS OFFENSE - OVERALL (29), RUSH (24), PASS (31).

VIKINGS DEFENSE - OVERALL (11), RUSH (15T), PASS (13).

STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES - Falcons have won three of past four at Minnesota, starting with OT victory at Metrodome in NFC championship game on Jan. 17, 1999. Only loss was 2007 opener, RB Adrian Peterson's NFL debut. ... Falcons OL coach Mike Tice was Vikings head coach from 2002-05. ... Falcons DE Ra'Shede Hageman played at Minneapolis Washburn High School and University of Minnesota. ... Falcons QB Matt Ryan already has two NFC Offensive Player of Week awards. He set single-game franchise records for completion rate (87.5) and passer rating (155.9) last week against Buccaneers as Falcons scored second-most points in club history. ... Sacked career-high 44 times last season, third-most in NFL, Ryan has been taken down just four times in three games behind improved OL. ... Falcons WR/KR/PR Devin Hester is reigning NFC Special Teams Player of Week award winner after setting NFL record against Buccaneers with 20th career return TD. Hester has nine TDs including four returns for scores in 15 games against Vikings. ... Teddy Bridgewater (21 years, 322 days) will become second-youngest QB to start game for Vikings, trailing only Fran Tarkenton (21 years, 226 days) in franchise's inaugural season, 1961. ... Bridgewater replaces Matt Cassel, who is out for year with broken left foot. RG Brandon Fusco is too, with torn pectoral muscle. TE Kyle Rudolph will sit out, recovering from sports hernia surgery. Peterson remains out with child abuse charge against him pending in Texas. ... Without Peterson, WR Cordarrelle Patterson is leading rusher. Without his 67-yard run in season opener, Vikings averaging only 3.2 yards per rush.

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