For the first time since 2009, the Minnesota Vikings are NFC North Division champions!!
It wasn't easy and it wasn't pretty, but the Vikes defeated their bitter rival the Green Bay Packers 20-13 in Lambeau Field last night. That win also broke the Pack's 4-year stranglehold on the division.
The Vikings will now host the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday while Green Bay travels to Washington, D.C. to take on the Redskins.
A few thoughts/factoids:
- Before the season I predicted the Vikes would win 9-10 games, which would be good enough for a wildcard berth. The 11 wins and a division title exceeded my expectations slightly.
- The Vikings went undefeated on the road (3-0) against their NFC North foes. That matches their road win total against those same three teams in the previous six years combined (3-14-1).
- For the first time since the NFC Championship Game at Metropolitan Stadium on December 26, 1976, the Vikings will be hosting an outdoor playoff game.
- About a month ago, the Vikings suffered their worst loss of the season when the Seattle Seahawks came to town and thumped them 38-7. The early line has Seattle as a 5-7 point favorite over the Vikings. While I do not believe the Seahawks will give a repeat performance (the Vikings will be much healthier on defense), they look poised to make a third consecutive trip to the Super Bowl given their play over the past 10 games. I'll have my official prediction this weekend.