The oddsmakers aren't doing too well so far this wild-card weekend. The Vikings are hoping to Vegas in the hole on Sunday. Plus, get more than three dozen statistical comparisons between the Vikings and Eagles.
Two down. Two to go.
According to those who set the game odds in Las Vegas, all four home teams were supposed to lose this weekend. Two games into the wild card round of the playoffs, those soothsayers are 0-2 themselves.
In Saturday's games, both home teams won by six points – Arizona rallying in the second half to defeat Atlanta 30-24 and San Diego scoring the game's final nine points in a 23-17 overtime win over Indianapolis.
In both instances, the home teams had been dogged for being playoff qualifiers simply because of the division in which they played. However, both showed why they are good teams at home and both came away with wins.
Vegas is saying the Dolphins and Vikings are going to lose. Minnesota fans can only hope what started on Saturday continues today.
VIKINGS-EAGLES BY THE NUMBERS
The Vikings had the 17th-rated offense in the league (fifth rushing, 25th passing) and the sixth-ranked defense (first rushing, 18th passing). The Eagles had the ninth-ranked offense (22nd rushing, sixth passing) and the third-ranked defense (fourth rushing, third passing).
The Eagles were one of just three teams to be ranked in the top 10 in both offense and defense – joining the Giants (seventh offense, fifth defense) and the Patriots (fifth offense, 10th defense).
The Vikings offense was sixth in the league in average gain per rush (4.5 yards). The Eagles were 24th (4.0 yards).
Philadelphia was 14th in the league in interception percentage for passes thrown, much of which can blamed on backup Kevin Kolb, who threw four picks in just 34 passes. The Vikings' QBs were 30th in that category – ahead of only the Browns and the Jets.
The Eagles ranked fifth offensively in sacks allowed per pass attempt. The Vikings were 28th.
When it came to gross punt average, Chris Kluwe ranked fourth in the league with a 47.6-yard average, while the Eagles were 22nd. But when return yards were factored in, the Eagles ranked 12th in net punt average, while the Vikings were 29th.
The Vikings were second only to Pittsburgh in yards allowed per rushing attempt defensively (3.3 yards). The Eagles were fourth, allowing just 3.5 yards per carry.
The defenses were both dominant most of the season. The Vikings were fourth in first downs allowed and third-down conversion percentage, while the Eagles were third and second, respectively, in those same categories. The Vikings allowed opponents to convert third downs at just 33.5 percent, while the Eagles allowed conversions at a stingy 32.2 percent clip. Only Pittsburgh (31.4 percent) was better.
The Vikings finished the season dead last in punt return average against their special teams.
The Eagles finished the year 14th in giveaway-takeaway numbers at plus-3. The Vikings were 24th at minus-6 – the worst giveaway-takeaway total of any team that made the playoffs.
Defense still wins football games in the NFL. Four of the top offenses in terms of yardage didn't make the playoffs. Six of the top seven defenses by that standard did make the playoffs.
Neither team was very efficient in their red zone offense. Philadelphia ranked 22nd in the league, scoring just 31 touchdowns in 63 red zone chances (49.2 percent). The Vikings were 28th, scoring just 19 touchdowns on 44 red zone opportunities (43.2 percent).
The only teams worse in converting offensive red zone chances into touchdowns than the Vikings were Oakland, Tampa Bay, Cleveland and St. Louis. Three of those teams fired their coach at some point during the season.
Defensively, the Vikings were fifth in red zone defense, allowing 20 touchdowns on 47 chances (42.6 percent).. The Eagles were 15th, allowing 19 TDs on 36 red zone opportunities (52.8 percent).
The Eagles defense tied for second in the league with allowing the opposition to get in the red zone just 36 times. Only the Giants (35) had fewer.
The Vikings' red zone defense led the league in allowing points on just 74.5 percent of red zone chances, meaning one in every four times an opponent got in the red zone, they came away without points.
The NFL average gain on first down was 5.34 yards. The Eagles defense was second with a 4.12 average, behind only the Steelers (3.93). The Vikings were 14th at 5.13 yards.
Donovan McNabb had three 300-yard games this season, while the Vikings haven't had one in three years under Brad Childress.
The Vikings defense allowed three 300-yard passers this year, while the Eagles allowed just one – Tony Romo in Week 2.
The Vikings had five 100-yard receivers – Bernard Berrian four times and Visanthe Shiancoe once. The Eagles had six – DeSean Jackson twice and once each by Brent Celek, Greg Lewis, Hank Baskett and Jason Avant.
The Vikings allowed just four receivers to top 100 yards, while the Eagles allowed it seven times.
Adrian Peterson topped 100 yards rushing 10 times, while Brian Westbrook accomplished that just three times.
The Vikings never allowed a 100-yard rusher this year, while the Eagles allowed three backs to top the century mark.
McNabb was near the top in several statistical categories this year, finishing fourth in attempts, fifth in completions, seventh in yards, eighth in touchdowns and sixth in interception percentage.
Tarvaris Jackson finished ninth in fourth-quarter passer rating at 94.0. McNabb was 11th with a rating of 93.2, but he and Kerry Collins were the only quarterbacks that qualified with enough passes not to throw an interception. McNabb had no picks in 122 passes in the fourth quarter, while Collins had none in 83 attempts.
Peterson led the league in rushing with 1,760 yards. Westbrook finished 18th with 936 yards.
DeSean Jackson led the Eagles in receptions, but his 62 catches were only good enough to tie for 35th place in the league. Bobby Wade's 53 catches tied him for 56th.
Bernard Berrian finished 24th in the league in receiving yards with 964, while Jackson was 28th with 912 yards.
Berrian was the only receiver in the NFL with more than 35 catches that averaged 20 yards per reception.
Chester Taylor finished tied for sixth in the league in third-down receptions with 25. He was the only running back with more than 20.
David Akers finished second in the league in scoring with 144 points. Ryan Longwell finished tied for seventh place with 127 points.
Longwell's 127 points were the most by a Vikings kicker since Gary Anderson scored 164 points in 1998. A Vikings kicker hadn't scored more than 106 points since Anderson scored 111 points in 2000.
Longwell was just one point short of the Vikings' all-time career high for points in a season.
Akers tied for sixth in the league with 17 kickoffs for a touchback. Longwell was tied for 27th with just six.
Peterson led the league in total yards from scrimmage with 1,885 (1,760 rushing and 115 receiving). Westbrook finished 18th with 1,338 yards (936 rushing, 402 receiving).
Both teams were well-represented among the league sack leaders. Jared Allen finished tied for fifth with 14.5 sacks, while Kevin Williams was tied for 15th with 8.5 sacks. For the Eagles, Darren Howard was 12th with 10 sacks and Trent Cole was 14th with nine sacks.
Ben Leber tied for the league lead with four defensive fumble recoveries.
The Vikings were penalized 90 times, but those flags cost the team 692 yards. Opponents were penalized 109 times, but for 1,002 total penalty yards.
Adrian Peterson finished the season with nine charged fumbles, four of which were recovered by opponents. Chester Taylor had just two fumbles, but both of them were lost.
Although he didn't have enough passes to qualify, Tarvaris Jackson's passer rating was 95.4. The only QBs that had higher passer ratings were Philip Rivers (105.4), Chad Pennington (97.4), Kurt Warner (96.9) and Drew Brees (96.2)
The Vikings were outscored 115-61 in the third quarter of games. In the other three quarters, they outscored their opponents 318-218.
The Eagles scored 30 or more points eight times, but allowed 30-plus just three times. On the flip side, the Eagles scored 14 or less just three times and allowed 14 or less in nine games.
Nineteen different players scored touchdowns for the Eagles, including 11 different players catching touchdown passes.