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Packers Seek First Road Win of the Season as Underdogs in Minnesota

Packers Vikings

The Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings didn’t have a winner when the final whistle blew in their Week 2 matchup with the game ending in a 29-29 tie. They face each other for the second time on Sunday night to decide who will win the season series.

With the Bears currently holding the keys to the NFC North, the Packers and Vikings are vying for one of the wild-card spots in the NFC. Minnesota currently sits as the sixth seed, but the Packers are only one game back and could overtake the Vikings’ playoff spot if they get the win and the Seahawks and the Cowboys both lose.

The Packers are currently set as 3-point road underdogs, with the total pegged at 48.

Shark Bites
  • The Packers are 0-7 SU and 1-5-1 ATS in their last seven games on the road (avg. losing margin: 10.29).
  • The Packers are 1-4 ATS in their last five games vs divisional opponents.
  • The Vikings rank No. 1 in opponents’ red-zone TD percentage (40%)

Packers vs Vikings Game Center

My Bet of the Night: UNDER 48

Although their first matchup of the season ended with 58 points being scored, I’m on the UNDER 48 in this matchup. The average combined score across the Vikings’ five home games so far this season is 40, which (for those of you who don’t have a calculator) is eight points less than the current total for this game.

Furthermore, the Packers are averaging 6.2 fewer points per game on the road than they are at home, while the opposite can be said for the Vikings, who are strangely scoring an average of 7.8 fewer points at U.S. Bank Stadium than they are in their away games.

Both teams’ defenses rank in the top half of the league in fewest yards allowed per game and fewest points allowed per game. They also both rank near the top in sacks with the Packers having the third-most in the league with 34, while the Vikings are tied for fifth with 32.

Despite both teams having better defensive units than you may have thought, it’s the Vikings defense that has quietly been one of the best across the league to date. They lead the league in getting off the field on third down, allowing opposing offenses to convert on third down only 28 percent of the time. They’re also the fourth-best team against the run, keeping opposing teams to an average of 94.8 yards on the ground per game. Finally, they’re the very best team in the league in preventing touchdowns when the other team gets to the red zone, only permitting them to score a TD 40 percent of the time.

It’s clear that all signs point to the UNDER in this game. The Vikings and Packers have underrated defenses and the home/away trends show that both teams should score fewer points than if this game was played in Green Bay.

As a cherry on top, the total has gone UNDER in seven of the last 10 SNF games.

How should you bet on the spread?

I feel less confident betting on the spread, but I’m inclined to lean more toward the Packers at +3.

The Packers are one of three teams to not win a game on the road so far this season, but as much as I hate to say something is ever “due” to happen, I honestly can’t see this streak extending for much longer and this seems like a great opportunity for them to break that trend.

Even though the Vikings are heading into this game with the better record, their best win of the season has come against an underperforming Eagles team. The combined record of the teams they have a win over this season is 15-35 and none of those teams currently have a winning record. The Packers, on the other hand, have wins over the 7-3 Bears and the 5-5 Dolphins, and only lost by two points to arguably the best team in the league in the Rams.

Rodgers has the edge in the QB duel

Aaron Rodgers has historically torched the Vikings. He sports a 110.7 QB rating with 40 TDs and six INTs over his 20 career starts against them. Despite him dropping off from being the betting favorite to win MVP at the start of the year, Rodgers is still putting up fantastic numbers. He is averaging 307.5 yards per game (more than current MVP odds leader Drew Brees), and he has 14 passes of 40-plus yards, the most in the league.

Rodgers has got to this point of the season only throwing a single interception, whereas Kirk Cousins has already thrown seven.

Cousins is inferior to Rodgers in almost every throwing statistic, including yards per game and quarterback rating. The gunslingers are tied in touchdown passes with 19 each.

Sunday Night Football Trends
  • The UNDER has hit in seven of the 11 Sunday Night Football games, with an average combined score of 47.18 points.
  • Underdogs are 6-5 ATS year-to-date on Sunday night.
  • Home teams are 8-3 SU but 5-6 ATS in this year’s Sunday night games.

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