2022 NFC North preview: Can Vikings catch Packers?

Website Logo

Dalvin Cook, Vikings

Sep 24, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) carries the ball during the first quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings have disappointed for years. Is this the season, with a new head coach, the Vikings can catch the Green Bay Packers?

In our 2022 NFC North Preview, we focus on whether Minnesota can compete. If there’s ever a year, this could be it.

The Green Bay Packers have enjoyed a pair of tremendous seasons over the last tow campaigns. They have been the NFC’s top seed each time, rolling through the NFC North and clinching early before enjoying a bye through the Wild Card round.

 

Want $250 to bet on NFL futures?

Sign up now!

 

Then, in the Divisionals and Championship Game, it’s been utter disappointment. Regardless of two years where quarterback Aaron Rodgers has taken home the MVP hardware, Green Bay has fallen short.

Now, with star receiver Davante Adams having been traded to the Las Vegas Raiders, the Packers appear to be more vulnerable than ever, even if the defense projects as a top-flight unit.

Enter the Minnesota Vikings.

While Minnesota is far from perfect in its own right, the Vikings are intriguing. They have finished out of the postseason each of the past two years, making it back in 2019 when they upset the New Orleans Saints on Wild Card Weekend.

However, hope is renewed. Out is old head coach Mike Zimmer, replaced by former Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinate Kevin O’Connell. The result could be a more dynamic offense based on the skills of quarterback Kirk Cousins, receivers Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen, and to an extent, running back Dalvin Cook.

 

Read: Bengals ‘Whole Focus’ Is Keeping Joe Burrow In Cincinnati

 

With the Detroit Lions ascending but still rebuilding, and the Chicago Bears doing whatever it is the Bears are doing, Minnesota is clearly the best bet to unseat Rodgers and the Packers. The. question is whether O’Connell can finally get the potential out of Minnesota, something that has long been the problem for a team seemingly long on talent but short on results.

For Green Bay, the task is simple. Handle business within the North, play well against the beatable AFC East — save for a tough road game against the Buffalo Bills — and force Minnesota to essentially win 12+ games to have any shot at the crown.

But which team is in better position to be kings of the North in 2022? We might get an early indication in Week 1, when the Packers visit the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Author: Lucas Carlson