Vikings staring down rare chance to bury Packers
After three decades of Favre & Rodgers, the Vikings now have a rare opportunity to be solely responsible in killing Green Bay’s playoff hopes.
How many times have the Vikings had the opportunity to destroy the Green Bay Packers’ playoff hopes? In the 30 years of having Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers from 1992 to 2022, the Packers have missed the playoffs just eight times.
The Vikings can claim credit for keeping the Packers from the playoffs in the last three seasons. They can do it again on Sunday with a win at Lambeau Field.
A loss to the Vikings and a win by the Lions in Detroit will knock the Packers out of playoff contention. The Lions are 6 points ahead of a shaky Bears team that has only 3 wins this season.
And since the Lions and Bears play at noon, there’s a chance (if the Lions win) that Green Bay will literally be in a must-win situation by the time their game against Minnesota starts at 3: 25 p.m.
Winning the division was Minnesota’s No. 1 goal. Beating the Packers at Lambeau to kill their playoff hopes would be a feather in the cap and the 2022 Vikings could join the teams from 1992, 1999 and 2017 as the only teams in the Favre-Rodgers era to be solely responsible for their mortal enemy’s death.
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The 1992 Packers finished 9-7 and lost the tiebreaker to Washington for the last wild card spot. Guess who beat the Packers in Week 17? It was the Vikings in a 27-7 rout. Favre was intercepted three more times, and Sean Salisbury threw touchdowns for tight ends Steve Jordan & Mike Tice.
The Vikings’ 24-20 win over the Packers in Week 15 of the 1999 season dropped Green Bay to 7-7 and they finished 8-8, losing tiebreakers to the Lions and Cowboys to miss the playoffs. The game came down to the wire with Brett Favre being intercepted by Robert Griffith in the end zone.
The 2017 Packers began at 4-1. Aaron Rodgers then broke his collarbone when Anthony Barr hit him on the turf at U.S. Bank Stadium. Green Bay lost without Rodgers, and finished 7-9. The Vikings can take credit for ending their season. After three decades of Favre & Rodgers, Minnesota is looking down at a rare chance to bury their opponent in the frozen tundra for all of the winter.
The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.