Vikings vs. Bears. Talk about a historic rivalry worthy of watching no matter how great each team is. The good news is both Minnesota and Chicago look to have great squads this year for very different reasons.
Minnesota lost in Week 1 to Detroit, but is always a serious threat to pay attention to thanks to Adrian Peterson. Chicago scored a major victory over Cincinnati in Week 1 thanks to the new offense in place by new head coach Marc Trestman.
Here are the most important things fans need to know about the game.
Where: Soldier Field, Chicago
When: September 15, 2013, 1:00 PM ET
Live Stream: NFL Sunday Ticket, Game Rewind
Vikings Player to Watch: Cordarrelle Patterson
We all know Adrian Peterson is a name to watch, but he’s going to need some help if the Vikings are going to win on the road and avoid an 0-2 start.
The passing game needs to wake up, and no, Jerome Simpson isn’t going to keep playing at such a high level. Minnesota took Cordarrelle Patterson high in the draft for a reason, but his debut was a dud with only one catch. That’s going to need to change if the Vikings are going to have any chance at all.
Bears Player to Watch: Martellus Bennett
The new offense in Chicago is intriguing to say the least. Jay Cutler is getting rid of the ball very fast, and he’s not just relying on old friend Brandon Marshall for most of his production.
Instead, Martellus Bennett, who arrived via free agency this offseason, made a big splash last week with a touchdown. Bennett needs to keep making a big splash because if he suddenly falls off the Vikings can simply key on Marshall and shut the offense down.
Matchup to Watch: Bears Defense vs. Adrian Peterson
It sounds so simple, doesn’t it?
The new-look defense in Chicago led by Jon Bostic looks great, but Adrian Peterson is the first real test. How the unit reacts and bottles up Peterson or doesn’t will decide the outcome of the game.
Peterson had a great game last week and the Vikings still lost, but that won’t always be the case. Chicago’s offense is going to need some help from its defense in order to hold off Minnesota at home.
The new offense in Chicago looks legitimate and the defense seems as sound as ever. The problem with this matchup is the Minnesota defense simply isn’t up to par.
Expect Peterson to run wild, but Chicago is simply more balanced on both sides of the football. Add in momentum from a big win and home field advantage, and the Bears look like the safe bet here.
Chicago 21, Vikings 10