2022 Packers Season Preview: Know Your Enemy, Minnesota Vikings

August 29, 2022
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With less than two weeks left before the opening kickoff, it’s time to discuss the rivalry between the Purple People Eaters and The Pack regarding the 2022 season. Which team has the better player personnel, the Packers or the Vikings?

The Vikings’ personnel on offense has not changed much since last season, which will give them the edge. As everyone should know by now, Davante Adams is no longer with the Packers after being traded to the Las Vegas Raiders in the off-season. The Packers will hopefully get some healthier players back in the mix after several injuries last year plagued the team. Both teams will square off Week one on Sunday, September 11.

Which Team Has The Better Quarterback, Packers Or Vikings?

The Top 100 list was recently finished and there are 96 spots separating these two quarterbacks. Aaron Rodgers for the Packers was placed at number three overall in the top 100 and Kirk Cousins for the Vikings barely cracked the top 100 at 99. The four-time NFL MVP has had a successful career with Green Bay and will look to continue his dominance this year. Kirk Cousins is now a three-time Pro Bowl selection and he hasn’t missed a game in eight years.

Both quarterbacks are top 15 fantasy football starters and they have an array of targets to throw to. The targets this year for the Packers will look a lot different than in previous years but the Vikings’ targets pretty much stayed the same. The touchdown to interception stat line is what proves that Rodgers is better than Cousins. Rodgers has the ability to put up a lot of touchdowns without causing many interceptions. Cousins still has time to improve that area of this game since he is four years younger than Rodgers.

How Do The Packers Running Backs Compare To The Vikings?

This is a tough comparison because both teams have really good sets of running backs. The Packers rock the tandem of Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon who will both act as a 1A running back this year. The Vikings have Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison. Cook is the 1A and Mattison is the 1B. Whenever Cook is out with an injury, Mattison can fill in as if there was no injury at all. They are very similar in the way they run and catch. Cook wasn’t utilized as much last season in the receiving game so he only posted just under 1,400 all-purpose yards and Mattison had 719 all-purpose yards.

Last season was the first time the Packers tried the two 1A back approach and this year it should be a true 50-50 split. Jones and Dillon posted similar stat lines last year with the exception of touchdowns. Jones had around 1,200 total yards with ten touchdowns and Dillon had just over 1,100 total yards with seven touchdowns. The edge goes to the Packers with the double 1A system and the ability to put up a lot of yards with the running backs. This year the running backs will be leaned on even more with a combined total of 100 plus receptions.

Packers Versus Vikings: Wide Receiver Depth

Last season this comparison was a lot closer with the two veteran receivers but the Packers lost Davante Adams via trade so now a new wide receiver needs to emerge. The Vikings’ top three wide receivers are Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen, and K.J. Osborn. Jefferson has been a star player for the Vikings as he has posted back-to-back seasons of 1,400-plus yards and seven plus touchdowns in his two years in the league. 32-year-old Thielen has been posting fewer yardage totals over the years with the emergence of Jefferson and reoccurring injuries each year. Osborn, the wide receiver three for the Vikings posted great WR3 numbers last year as his first year as a wide receiver on the team.

The Packers will lean more on Allen Lazard after he posted personal records in catches and yards last year. He will open Week one as the top wide receiver for Aaron Rodgers. Sammy Watkins was added in the off-season to bolster the wide receiver room. If he can stay healthy, this could be a rebound season for him with Rodgers as his quarterback. Two rookie receivers were added via the NFL Draft. Christian Watson was added early in the second round and Romeo Doubs was added in the fourth round. Both players played well in college, it’ll take a couple of weeks to see how they fit in this offense.

Packers

Who Has The Better Tight End? Packers Or Vikings

It’s hard to give the edge to any team with these two tight ends based on previous years. Robert Tonyan was a star for the Packers in 2020 but fell short last season as he tore his ACL in Week eight. He will look to rebound as TE1 this season whenever he is cleared to play, which Week one isn’t guaranteed. Irv Smith Jr. will finally be the top option at tight end for the Vikings this year. A player that came into the league with high expectations hasn’t lived up to the hype yet, maybe this year that’ll change.

Tyler Conklin took the spotlight from Smith Jr. last year but he signed with the Jets in the off-season. If Smith Jr. can shake off his current hand injury, he will have no excuses this year. While Tonyan is nursing himself back into shape, Josiah Deguara will fill in for him. Deguara has also not lived up to his hype but will still make the cut. He has played average since being selected in round three of the 2020 draft. As of now, both teams split the tight end depth with no clear winner.

Which Offensive Line Is Better: Packers Versus Vikings

The Packers have the depth needed to excel this year but injuries need to stay away. Green Bay currently has two elite linemen dealing with injuries. David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins are trying to shake off injuries and play Week one as they will be needed this year. Back in June, PFF posted the top projected offensive lines in the league. The Packers have a true top-five OL depth even with a couple of injuries.

The Vikings were 19th on the list but they have the potential to move up on that list. It all depends on how the team develops and how much time Cousins needs in the pocket. Currently, the starting five for the Vikings are all healthy which will help as we get closer to Week one. With the proven starters for the Packers, the edge goes to them. If Bakhtiari needs one to two more weeks to recover, Jenkins has proved that he can excel in any of the five spots so he may be chosen as a replacement if he can get back on the field.

Will The Packers Win The Series Or Will The Vikings Fight Back?

This is a tough decision as both squads have been at the top of the NFC North and shall once again be up top. My Packers schedule projections for 2022 have the Packers and Vikings splitting the season. Both teams will win in their respective stadiums. Green Bay will travel to Minnesota in Week one and I don’t believe the Packers will be able to overcome the Vikings with all of the new additions. The Packers will need a couple of weeks to get into sync.

The Vikings travel to Green Bay in Week 17 in what might be a snowy showdown. If it’s cold, snowy, or windy, the Packers have the advantage on Lambeau field. After inking a shiny new deal in the off-season, Aaron Rodgers is poised to shoot for another NFL MVP and lead the Packers into the post-season once again. This year the Packers will have an improved defense that should help balance the offensive and defensive sides.