One of the most important games played this week in the NFL will be a matchup between the Arizona Cardinals and Minnesota Vikings. Despite their struggles, both teams are less than one game behind the Washington Redskins for the final playoff spot in the NFC. A win in Week 11 will go a long way to getting either team back on track to securing a playoff spot.
The Minnesota Vikings looked like one of the best teams in the league after their first five games, but they have gone on an embarrassing four-game losing streak since the great start. Despite the long losing streak, the Vikings still have to be thankful for their current spot in the standings. None of the teams in the NFC North are playing well at the moment, so they still have a great shot at winning the division. The Arizona Cardinals, are not going to catch the Seattle Seahawks, who are one of the most legitimate playoff contenders, in the NFC West, but they are certainly talented enough to get one of the wild card playoff spots in the NFC.
The game on Sunday between the Cardinals and Vikings will be decided by the defenses. The second and third best defenses in the NFL will battle it out against each other on Sunday, so this will likely be an extremely low scoring game. If either team is able to score 20 points, then they will most likely be victorious. The Arizona Cardinals have to be considered the favorites despite playing on the road because their strengths match up well against the Vikings.
The only way to move the ball on the defense of the Arizona Cardinals is on the ground, but the Minnesota Vikings have an abysmal rushing attack. The Cardinals' secondary is loaded with superstar players that have a knack for shutting down the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Sam Bradford has done a good job at managing the game and avoiding turnovers, but he is still one of the worst starting quarterbacks in the league. If Patrick Peterson is able to shut down Stefon Diggs, then the Vikings are going to have a hard time getting first downs throughout the entire game.
The Cardinals also match up well against the Vikings because they have talented players at nearly every position on offense. While the Cardinals have struggled to score points at times this season, they have the talent to move the ball on the Vikings. Running back David Johnson is virtually impossible to stop for a whole game. The Vikings simply do not have someone like that on their offense with Adrian Peterson out for the season. Larry Fitzgerald is one of the best wide receivers in the history of the NFL, so he will also find a way to make a few big plays in this game. These two superstar players on offense will make it much easier for the Cardinals to create scoring drives, and that is all you need to win in a game that is likely to be decided by a few points.