Week 10 wraps up with the Minnesota Vikings (2-6) heading to Lambeau Field to take on their NFC North rival Green Bay Packers (8-0).
The Vikings are in last place in the NFC North and are coming out of their bye week, which should have given rookie QB Christian Ponder some extra time to settle in the offense. Ponder is making his fourth start tonight and is throwing an average of 184.7 yards a game but with a QB rating of only 77.5. Ponder should have some opportunities tonight as the Packer defense is 31st in the league giving up 299.6 yards per game.
The Vikings will rely heavily on their ground game which is fifth in the NFL with 150.4 yards per game. RB Adrian Peterson has nine touchdowns and is fifth in the league averaging 4.9 yards per carry. This will be an interesting match up as the Packers rush defense is ranked eighth giving up only 100 yards per game. Defensively, the Vikings have the sixth-best run defense giving up 94.4 yards per game which should allow them to hold the Packer’s 21st ranked rushing attack in check but the passing defense is another story.
The Vikings are 30th in the league in pass defense giving up 273.6 yards per game through the air and coming up against Aaron Rogers who is third in the league with an average of 327.5 passing yards per game. The Vikings will get CB Antoine Winfield back from an injury tonight but will need a much more cohesive effort to slow down Rogers.
The undefeated Packers come into the game fourth in total offense putting up 416.4 yards per game and first in points per game at 34.4. Aaron Rogers has been phenomenal and leads the league with a QB rating of 129.1 with 24 touchdowns to only three interceptions. While the running game is 21st in the league with 104.4 yards per game, it does enough to keep defenses honest.
The only Packers weakness has been their passing defense, which is allowing 299.6 yards per game. While this is 31st in the league, the outstanding play in the secondary has helped offset it. Corner Charles Woodson is tied for first in the league with five interceptions, while Safety Charles Peprah is in second with four. If the line can put some pressure on Christian Ponder, these two could have a big game tonight.
FOX Business has evaluated the win/loss and stock market statistics over the past 20 seasons of Monday night NFL games and come up with a Monday Night Markets (MNM) score for each team based on their record and the prior week’s market activity. Let’s take a look at what the markets have to say.
The major indexes ended the week in positive territory with the Dow Industrials closing out the week up 1.42%, now up six of the last seven weeks and the S&P 500, gaining 0.85%, now up five of the last six weeks. The markets were pressured by the ongoing European debt crisis but overcame a mid-week selloff after the Italian senate vote eased those concerns and PM Silvio Berlusconi announced he would step down. Stocks also gained on an upbeat jobless claims report and a narrower-than-expected trade deficit.
Over the past 20 years, the Vikings have played 30 Monday night games and based on our calculations have a Monday night rank of 0.375 when the Dow closes the prior week up and 0.353 when the S&P 500 is up, giving them a MNM rank for this week of 0.364.
During the same 20 year period, the Packers have played 39 Monday night games and have a rank of 0.500 when the Dow is up and 0.476 when the S&P 500 is down, giving them an MNM rank this week of 0.488.
Monday Night Markets picks the Green Bay Packers at home to remain undefeated.
FBN STAFF PICKS - WEEK 10
Chris Cotter (6-4)
The Vikes are going score points but packers will score more and win a close one.
Sandra Smith (7-3)
Going with the pack!
Robert Gray (5-4)
The Vikings no doubt spent the bye week searching for a way to put the hammer down on Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers. Unless the purple-clad Norse crew managed to sign Thor during the break, the juggernaut Packer offense will keep rolling and the team’s pristine record stays intact.
FOX BUSINESS NETWORK FOOTBALL INDEX