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Week 5 Thursday Night Football open thread: Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers

Adam Bettcher

So, Thursday Night Football... the last few games haven't been inspiring viewing, have they?  It's probably a good thing that I can't stay up that late to watch the one-sided affairs.    However, tonight's contest contains some added spice as it's between two of our divisional rivals, both of whom are currently 2-2 and both of whom the Chicago Bears play in quick succession immediately following the bye week.

The Minnesota Vikings come into the game on the wave of a 28-41 home win over the Atlanta Falcons.  That they were playing without Adrian Peterson - only the best player on their roster (technically he still is, at least) by far, whom the offense was constructed around - and with rookie Teddy Bridgewater making his first NFL start, makes it all the more impressive.

Minnesota is fourth in the NFC with 134.8 rushing yards per game, relying on Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon to pound the rock; with Bridgewater ruled out of tonight's game with an ankle injury and third-stringer Christian Ponder starting in his place (Matt Cassel, don't forget, is out for the season with a broken foot; for some reason Rick Spielman resisted the urge to give Josh Freeman another call), expect to see plenty of the Vikings' run game as they face the NFL's worst run defense in the Packers.

On the defensive side of the ball, head coach Mike Zimmer described their third down defense as "terrible".  I hate to admit it, but Aaron Rodgers made the Bears' first, second and third down defense look pretty terribad in Sunday's game, and I'm sure I don't need to rehash it for you.  Having had time to study game tape and plan how to stop Rodgers, albeit on a short week, can the Vikings do any better?

As Schweickert likes to say, open thread responsibly (Tm)!