Kickoff: Sunday, Noon CT
Television: FOX – Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Pam Oliver
Series: 95th regular-season meeting. Packers lead series 49-44-1. Green Bay is 5-0 under Mike McCarthy against the Vikings and seeking a third straight season sweep of its NFC North rivals. The Packers have won the past two meetings and four of the last five encounters at the Metrodome. The teams have met once in the postseason, with the Vikings' scoring a 31-17 win at Green Bay in an NFC wild-card game during the 2004 season.
KEYS TO THE GAME
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers is coming off his second-worst game of the season, but he must rebound quickly. RB Ryan Grant has rushed for at least 90 yards in each of the past two meetings, but counting on consistent rushing yards against Minnesota's NFC-best run defense (69.6 yards per game allowed) is a risky bet. As with their win against Houston last weekend, the Vikings will likely concede underneath passes in an effort to eliminate big plays, leaving it to the Packers' receivers to make plays after the catch. ... The Vikings aren't considered an explosive offensive team, but they are second in the NFL with nine touchdowns of at least 20 yards. The Packers gave up 175 rushing yards in the first meeting and are ranked 27th against the run, so they'll often stack the box with eight defenders. The question then becomes whether the Vikings' receivers can beat the Packers' bump-and-run coverage and if QB Gus Frerotte can make Green Bay pay for focusing on RB Adrian Peterson.
Packers: Rodgers continues to take limited practice reps to lessen the workload on his sprained shoulder.
Vikings: DE Jared Allen (shoulder) is very questionable.
Green Bay is 1-4 this season when it allows at least 175 rushing yards. The one win came against the Vikings, who rushed for 187 yards. ... 11 of the past 12 meetings have been decided by seven points or less.
WR Donald Driver
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Packers: LT Chad Clifton was a full participant in practice Thursday after being limited the previous day. He is expected to rejoin the starting lineup Sunday. Clifton didn't play in the Packers' overtime loss at Tennessee last Sunday after he had an allergic reaction to anti-inflammatory medicine he received a few hours before the game. ... CB Charles Woodson was limited to the jog-through portion at the start of practice for the second straight day, strictly a precautionary routine he has been on every week since the starter suffered a broken toe in the Sep. 8 season-opening win over the Vikings. Woodson hasn't been affected by the toe in recent weeks and will be ready for Sunday. ... LB Desmond Bishop was a full participant in practice for the second straight day and appears to have recovered from a strained hamstring that kept the backup and special-teams contributor out of the last game. He likely will be available to play Sunday. ... WR Donald Driver will go into Sunday's game needing a catch to set a franchise record for consecutive games with a reception. Driver is tied with record-setter Sterling Sharpe at 103 straight games in regular-season play.
Vikings: S Husain Abdullah was limited in practice for a second consecutive day Thursday because of a neck injury. ... LB David Herron was limited in practice Wednesday and Thursday because of a hip injury. Herron has not played in the past two games. ... TE Garrett Mills was limited in practice Wednesday and Thursday because of an ankle injury that sidelined him for the Vikings' victory over Houston last Sunday. ... WR Robert Ferguson returned to the team Thursday after missing Wednesday so he could tend to a personal issue. Ferguson was inactive for last Sunday's game against Houston. ... LB Ben Leber is tied for first in the NFL with three fumble recoveries this season. Leber has four combined takeaways (three fumble recoveries and one interception, which is a career high).
Packers 30, Vikings 24.
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