Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings (3.5, 46)
The Green Bay Packers' path is pretty well defined. If the visiting Packers can defeat the NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, they'll receive a bye and punch their ticket to the divisional playoffs. Should Green Bay suffer just its second loss in 11 outings, it could still clinch the No. 2 seed - provided San Francisco stumbles against Arizona and fellow NFC West rival Seattle follows suit versus St. Louis.
Minnesota's path to the postseason is a little trickier. A fourth straight victory on Sunday will secure the Vikings the No. 6 seed - and perhaps a return trip to Lambeau Field for the first round of the playoffs. A loss to the division foe on Sunday isn't entirely a death knell to the season, although Minnesota would require Chicago, Dallas and the New York Giants to all suffer losses in Week 17.TV:
4:25 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE:
Packers -3.5, O/U 46ABOUT THE PACKERS (11-4):
Green Bay, which has defeated Minnesota in five straight games, secured its postseason berth with a convincing 55-7 rout of Tennessee last week. Pro Bowler Aaron Rodgers led the charge with his second consecutive three-touchdown game on Sunday, and has torched Minnesota during the team's winning streak. Rodgers has thrown for 14 touchdowns and accumulated a 122.2 passer rating. Green Bay's run-by-committee approach has been successful, with veteran Ryan Grant recording 80 yards and a pair of scores last week.ABOUT THE VIKINGS (9-6):
Adrian Peterson's bid to usurp Eric Dickerson's single-season rushing record hit a bump in the road in last week in the team's 23-6 victory over Houston. The Pro Bowler battled abdominal soreness to amass "only" 86 yards, thus requiring 208 on Sunday if he wishes to break Dickerson's 1984 mark. Peterson torched the Packers for 210 yards on Dec. 2, but Green Bay walked away with a 23-14 triumph. Christian Ponder was victimized by two critical interceptions in the loss.TRENDS:
* Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last four games overall.
* Vikings are 4-1-1 ATS in their last six home games.
* Under is 5-0 in Packers’ last five vs. NFC North foes.
* Under is 6-0 in Vikings’ last six vs. a team with a winning record.EXTRA POINTS
1. Green Bay OLB Clay Matthews didn't play in the first meeting due to a hamstring injury. The Pro Bowler, who has a team-high 12 sacks, is set to compete on Sunday, however.
2. Ponder has been picked off on only one occasion during Minnesota's three-game winning streak.
3. Packers WR Jordy Nelson returned to practice this week after injuring his hamstring in the teams' earlier tilt.