MINNEAPOLIS – The Green Bay Packers (8-2) are playing the Minnesota Vikings (4-5) on Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium. Follow along all day for updates.
The Vikings won 34-31 on the final play.
Packers 31, Vikings 31 (2:08 remaining)
The Packers wasted no time. Which might be a problem. On the first play of the drive, Aaron Rodgers threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Valdes-Scantling beat safety Xavier Woods, caught the ball at the Vikings’ 45 and turned on the jets.
Vikings 31, Packers 24 (2:17 remaining)
On third-and-3, safety Darnell Savage blitzed up the middle but Kirk Cousins unloaded the ball just before Savage arrived. The blitz left Justin Jefferson one-on-one with rookie cornerback Eric Stokes. Jefferson, as he’s done throughout the game, won the matchup. He adjusted to a slightly underthrown ball at the 4 and tumbled into the end zone for a 23-yard touchdown. Dalvin Cook’s run tacked on two points to make it 31-24 with 2:17 to go. Jefferson has seven receptions for 163 yards and two scores.
Packers 24, Vikings 23 (7:49 remaining)
In the craziest drive you’ll ever see, the Packers drove to the go-ahead touchdown. With Aaron Rodgers calling for timeout, nobody blocking Everson Griffen and nobody covering Davante Adams, Rodgers connected with Adams for an 18-yard touchdown. The officials ruled Lucas Patrick’s snap came just before Rodgers called the timeout. On third-and-1 earlier in the drive, Rodgers handed the ball to Randall Cobb who gave an option flip to AJ Dillon for a gain of 7 and the first down.
Vikings 23, Packers 17 (13:20 remaining)
Pro Bowl offensive lineman Elgton Jenkins was injured, meaning Yosh Nijman is in at left tackle. Safety Harrison Smith plowed through Jenkins and running back AJ Dillon to sack Aaron Rodgers.Jenkins walked off the field with two trainers and went inside the blue medical tent. With the drive continuing, he was carted into the locker room for further examination.
Officially, Jenkins is questionable with a knee injury.
Vikings 23, Packers 17 (0:00 remaining)
The Packers got a huge stop. On third-and-10, Preston Smith blew past rookie left tackle Christian Darrisaw for a sack and strip. The Vikings recovered but the Packers will have the ball after a punt opens the fourth quarter.
Vikings 23, Packers 17 (3:35 remaining)
Given a month of Sundays in the pocket, Aaron Rodgers found Davante Adams for a 9-yard touchdown. Adams ran a crossing route from left to right. Stopped, then went from right to left. Rodgers threw a dart to Adams over cornerback Mackensie Alexander. It was one of Green Bay’s best drives in weeks, with a 13-yard pass to AJ Dillon, a 12-yard pass on a back-shoulder ball to Adams, a 17-yard connection to Adams on a bootleg, an 18-yard scramble and an 11-yard gain by Equanimeous St. Brown with Dominique Dafney making the key block.
Vikings 23, Packers 10 (8:26 remaining)
On third-and-goal at the 9, star receiver Justin Jefferson lined up in the backfield and ran a circle route, catching the ball at the 3 and beating Henry Black to the goal line for the touchdown to make it a two-touchdown game. It was Minnesota’s third third-down conversion on the drive. Rookie cornerback Eric Stokes had a rough drive. He gave up a 15-yard catch to Tyler Conklin on the first play, missed a tackle on Dalvin Cook on third-and-1 and failed to grab an interception and exited with an injury. Kirk Cousins has been the best quarterback and Jefferson the best receiver.
Vikings 16, Packers 10
That Aaron Rodgers-to-Josiah Deguara touchdown late in the half was huge, because the Vikings will get the ball to start the second half.
After dominating Arizona’s Kyler Murray, Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes and Seattle’s Russell Wilson the past three weeks, it is Kirk Cousins doing the dominating today. He is 9-of-12 for 162 yards and one touchdown, good for a 144.4 passer rating. Justin Jefferson has three receptions for 104 yards. Rodgers is 13-of-22 for 188 yards and one touchdown, good for a 102.1 rating. Like last week, it’s an all-or-nothing passing attack. Marquez Valdes-Scantling (39), Davante Adams (37) and Deguara (25) have 101 yards. The other 19 attempts have gained 87 yards.
Vikings 16, Packers 10 (30 seconds remaining)
Aaron Rodgers and Josiah Deguara haven’t always been on the same page. They were at a critical time. On third-and-5 from the 25, Rodgers escaped to his left and threw a dime to Deguara in the end zone for the touchdown against former All-Pro safety Harrison Smith. Earlier, Rodgers and Randall Cobb converted a third-and-8 with a 15-yard connection. Mason Crosby made the extra point – a newsworthy moment – and it’s a six-point game.
Vikings 16, Packers 3 (6:00 remaining)
Aaron Rodgers is 8-of-15 passing. Needing an answer with the game slipping away, Billy Turner was flagged for holding on first down, Rodgers threw it into the turf on second down and Matt LaFleur ran a surrender draw on third down. On the punt, Dede Westbrook muffed the kick but the ball bounced right to him.
So, now comes a huge drive. Minnesota has the ball, leads by 13 and will get the ball to start the second half.
Vikings 16, Packers 3 (7:37 remaining)
If the Packers lose – and they’re in deep trouble – the obvious turning point will be the roughing-the-passer penalty on Kingsley Keke that eliminated Darnell Savage’s goal-line interception. Instead of 9-3, it’s 16-3 because of the helmet-to-helmet hit. The score came on third-and-goal at the 10. Kirk Cousins found Adam Thielen wide open in the flat, and he avoided Kevin King’s tackle for the touchdown. Meanwhile, Justin Jefferson is killing Green Bay. A 37-yard penalty for interference on Savage put the Vikings in scoring position. Jefferson beat Eric Stokes on the play; a better ball would have been a touchdown.
Vikings 9, Packers 3 (11:15 remaining)
So much for field-goal momentum. Mason Crosby drilled the left upright from 32 yards, so it was a red-zone failure and a special-teams failure. Aaron Rodgers hit Marquez Valdes-Scantling for a gain of 39 on third-and-12 but consecutive throwaways on second and third down brought out Crosby for yet another miss.
Vikings 9, Packers 3 (0:00 remaining)
Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins is 5-of-5 for 125 yards while Aaron Rodgers is 6-of-9 for 64 yards. Running back Dillon has four of the catches.
Vikings 9, Packers 3 (1:48 remaining)
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Getting back the team’s All-Pro cornerback, All-Pro left tackle and Pro Bowl outside linebacker, to state the obvious, would be a huge lift to the 9-3 Packers.
For the second time, the Packers blew coverage on one of the NFL’s top receivers. On second-and-7, Justin Jefferson lined up in the slot and ran through the heart of the secondary. With Eric Stokes caught flat-footed, Jefferson caught Kirk Cousins’ deep ball at the 15 and was hauled down by safety Adrian Amos at the 1 for a gain of 56. Vikings coach Mike Zimmer wasted a challenge flag – he doesn’t think his team can score from the 1? – and the Viking scored on the next play. Dalvin Cook got punishing blocks by Mason Cole and Blake Brandel. Oren Burks and TJ Slaton won't want to watch the film. The extra point was no good.
Packers 3, Vikings 3 (5:08 remaining)
The Packers got two bits of good fortune on a scoreless drive. First, Aaron Rodgers was sacked by Armon Watts and fumbled. Players from both sides dove for the ball and it dribbled to Rodgers for the recovery. On the punt, Steven Wirtel’s snap was terrible – low and right – but Corey Bojorquez made the grab and booted a 40-yard punt with a fair catch.
Packers 3, Vikings 3 (9:14 remaining)
Just like the Packers, the Vikings took advantage of one blown coverage to kick one long field goal. On third-and-6, it appeared dime defender Henry Black dropped coverage on star receiver Justin Jefferson, who caught a deep crossing route 17 yards downfield and took it for a gain of 43. Tyler Lancaster demolished tight end Tyler Conklin to drop Dalvin Cook for minus-3 on second down and Preston Smith sacked Kirk Cousins on third down.
Packers 3, Vikings 0 (13:17 remaining)
Mason Crosby made a 54-yard field goal to give the Packers the early lead. It was a big kick for a struggling unit. On the first play from scrimmage, the Vikings blew the coverage on All-Pro receiver Davante Adams, of all people. He took a crossing route for a gain of 34 but two incomplete passes to Marquez Valdes-Scantling sandwiched a 2-yard flip to AJ Dillon that officially was ruled a pass.
Mason Crosby lost the coin toss. The Vikings deferred and Amari Rodgers is back to return the kickoff. For what it's worth, Green Bay won the toss in Weeks 1, 2 and 4 and only once since (Week 8 at Arizona).
Limiting Davante's Destruction
Green Bay’s scoring offense is down 10.2 points per game compared to last year’s NFL-leading clip. It’s not hard to figure out why.
The Packers led the NFL with an 80.0 percent touchdown rate in the red zone last year. It was the best mark since the NFL began charting red-zone efficiency in 1998. This year, the Packers are 25th at 53.9 percent. On first-and-goal, they’re a dreadful 27th at 63.2 percent.
A key has been defense’s limiting the destruction delivered by Davante Adams. Last year, he caught 23-of-28 targets and scored 14 touchdowns once inside the 20-yard line. Only three players had more red-zone receptions than Adams had red-zone touchdowns. This year, he’s caught 7-of-12 targets and scored three touchdowns.
“Every time you enter into that 20-yard line, the whole game changes,” offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett said. “Once you’re inside that 20, less for them to defend, more people in a very tight area and all the gaps makes it much more difficult to run. One of our philosophies is you have to be able to go north and south. Watching AJ (Dillon) do what he did down there was awesome and hopefully that’s going to bring more people in there and we’ll be able to attack more outside. It’s just kind of a give and take once you’re down there.”
Defensively, Minnesota is 26th in the red zone (66.7 percent) and 25th in goal-to-go (68.0 percent).
Carnage at Outside Linebacker
The Packers have been slammed by injuries at outside linebacker, with Za’Darius Smith, Whitney Mercilus, Chauncy Rivers and Randy Ramsey on injured reserve and, now, with Rashan Gary inactive for Sunday.
Tipa Galeai, who is stronger and battle-tested after embracing a year-and-a-half of scout team reps, is the next man up.
“Same thing as it was growing up,” he said. “Playing football, one guy goes down and the next man is up. I don’t see it any different than that. Of course, we’d all love to see players to stay healthy, but the game is the game and that stuff happens. I think it’s more on how you react is how you overcome it.”
“I’m excited to go into the game with them Sunday,” he added.
King of the North
Aaron Rodgers might own Chicago but Matt LaFleur is the king of the North.
Entering Sunday, LaFleur owns a preposterous 13-1 record in NFC North games. The lone loss came last season at Lambeau Field, when the Vikings (who were 1-5) shocked the Packers (who were 5-1) 28-22.
LaFleur and Steve Mariucci are the only coaches in NFL history to win 13 of their first 14 divisional games, according to the Elias Sports Bureau via the Packers’ Dope Sheet. Among all coaches who began their career since 1970, LaFleur is the only coach to open with seven consecutive road wins within the division.
LaFleur swears there’s no magic.
“We make a big emphasis on the division game,” he said. “I would say that a lot of it is a reflection on what you’ve done in the past vs. a certain team, specifically a divisional opponent. There’s only so many hours in each week that you can prepare [during the season]. I would say that a lot of stuff goes into when you’re in the offseason, when you’re doing self-scout, when you’re watching clips, whatever it may be. There’s a lot of discussion that comes up in terms of maybe things that you really like or you’ve got to do differently. But it goes for them, too.”
How to Watch Packers vs. Vikings
TV: Fox – Kevin Burkhardt (play-by-play), Greg Olsen (analyst) and Pam Oliver (sideline).
Stream: You can stream the game on FuboTV. Get a 7-day Free Trial.
Coverage Map: Check out the map at 506Sports.com to see if the game will be broadcast in your neighborhood.
Radio: Packers Radio Network – Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) Larry McCarren (analyst). ESPN – Marc Kestecher (play-by-play) and Kirk Morrison (analyst). Sirius – 158 (GB), 82 (Min.) XM – 382 (GB), 227 (Min.) SXM App – 811 (GB), 820 (Min.)
NFC North Standings
The Packers have more wins than everyone else in the NFC North combined. Entering Week 11, Green Bay is 8-2, Minnesota is 4-5, Chicago is 3-6 and Detroit is 0-8-1.
Packers vs. Vikings Betting Information
At SI Sportsbook, the Packers have been 1 1/2-point favorites all week, though the total has fallen from 49 to 47 1/2 points.
As of Sunday morning at FanDuel, the bettors were all over the Packers with 66 percent of the money and 78 percent of the bets on Green Bay. Most of the bets are on the under but 56 percent of the money is on the over.
Including a split of two playoff games, Green Bay leads the series 63-55-3. The Packers are 30-29 in Minneapolis, with wins the past two seasons.
Last year, Green Bay won the opener at Minnesota 43-34 on Sept. 13, 2020. Aaron Rodgers was dominant in an empty U.S. Bank Stadium, going 32-of-44 for 364 yards and four touchdowns. Davante Adams tied the franchise record with 14 receptions for 156 yards and two touchdowns.
This will be Rodgers’ 25th regular-season start vs. Minnesota. He’s thrown 50 touchdowns vs. seven interceptions, good for a passer rating of 108.5. He is 14-9-1 in those games. Rodgers is the only player with five games of four-plus touchdowns and zero interceptions vs. Minnesota.
All-time against the Vikings, Brett Favre is No. 1 in wins (17), passing yards (7,379) and passing touchdowns (54). Rodgers is No. 2 in wins (15), passing yards (6,130) and touchdowns (50). Favre started 31 games against Minnesota compared to 24 for Rodgers. Favre threw the most interceptions against the Vikings while Rodgers is tied for 36th.