Packers bring down Vikings ballcarrier

Surrendering 43 points in a Week 1 loss to the Green Bay Packers, the Minnesota Vikings saw their 2020 NFL playoff odds jump from -130 to +120. Photo by: @BakoSportsNet (Twitter)

  • The Minnesota Vikings took a Week 1 hit and so did their 2020 NFL playoff odds
  • Odds of the Vikings reaching the postseason lengthened from -130 to +120
  • The Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Indianapolis Colts, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Francisco 49ers also saw their playoffs odds worsen following opening-week setbacks

Their Week 1 loss served notice that these aren’t your grandfather’s Minnesota Vikings.

No, grandpa’s Vikings would’ve saved their worst stinker of the season for Super Bowl Sunday. They wouldn’t lay an egg like that on opening day.

They did, however, carry on a Vikings tradition – offer hope, build optimism – and then crush it like a bulldozer running over a can of soup.

Sunday’s 43-34 home setback against the Green Bay Packers not only left Minnesota 0-1, it sent the team’s odds to make the NFL playoffs plummeting like the stock market when COVID-19 first hit.

The Vikings were a -130 odds-on choice to be an NFL postseason participant prior to the Week 1 kickoff. Today, that betting line has climbed to +120.

Minnesota Vikings Odds to Make 2020 NFL Playoffs

Date Odds to Make Playoffs Odds to Miss Playoffs at FanDuel
Prior To Week 1 -130 +108
Following Week 1 +120 -146

Odds as of Sept. 15th.

The Philadelphia Eagles (-118 to -110), Dallas Cowboys (-280 to -225), Indianapolis Colts (-198 to -140), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-188 to -138) and San Francisco 49ers (-410 to -225) also saw their playoff odds worsen following opening-week setbacks.

Slip Sliding Away

The cold weather of a Minnesota winter hasn’t even hit yet and already bookmakers are sending the temperature of the Vikings’ postseason chances into sub-zero locales.

Entering play Sunday, the Vikings were a solid co-sixth choice to make the NFL playoffs. That means the oddsmakers viewed Minnesota as a playoff team prior to Sunday’s setback.

Today, the gleam is off that prediction. There are 18 teams now assigned better odds than Minnesota to be postseason participants.

That list includes nine NFC clubs. The Chicago Bears (+110), Arizona Cardinals (+116) and Los Angeles Rams (-136) are all assigned better playoff chances today than Minny.

Packers Eat Purple People Eaters’ Lunch

Early on, it appeared that Minnesota’s defense might save the day. The Vikings came up with a pair of early red-zone stands, forcing Green Bay to settle for field goals.

When all was said and done, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers dominated Minnesota’s defense. Green Bay held the ball for an astonishing 41:16 of game time and compiled 522 yards of offense.

The Vikings frequently packed eight players in the box to slow Packers running back Aaron Jones. Jones averaged 6.7 yards per carry last season in two games against Minnesota.

Rodgers simply took what the Vikes were willing to give him. Receiver Davante Adams caught a franchise-record 14 passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns.

Offense Goes AWOL

Minnesota opted to invest heavily in offense. Quarterback Kirk Cousins (two-year, $66-million extension) and running back Dalvin Cook (five-year, $63-million extension) both got paid during the offseason. But in Week 1, that investment didn’t pay off.

Cook rushed for 50 yards in the loss. Cousins and the Minny offense possessed the ball for just 18:44.

That’s the lowest time of possession number ever posted by the Vikings since the NFL first began tabulating the stat in 1977.

It’s Going to Get Worse

Minnesota’s defense, rebuilt after so many key players left via free agency, looks to still be under construction. Rodgers exploited a secondary that listed three new starters.

With Danielle Hunter (neck injury) out and newcomer Yannick Ngakoue (0 tackles, 0 sacks) a non-factor, there was no pass rush in evidence whatsoever.

Four of Minnesota’s first five games are against 2019 playoff clubs. Things could get a lot worse in a hurry.

Pick: Minnesota Vikings to miss playoffs (-146)

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