Lions-Vikings Part 3 Could Soon Be a Reality

A Vikings Defensive Exodus May Hurt
Dec 11, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams (30) is tackled by Minnesota Vikings linebacker Danielle Hunter (99) and linebacker Eric Kendricks (54) during the first quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

For the past few weeks, a big topic of discussion has regarded which team the Vikings might end up playing in the Wild Card round of the playoffs. One of the potential matchups is against an NFC North foe, but not one you might have expected at the beginning of the year. Indeed, Lions-Vikings part 3 could soon be a reality. Well, now that the Vikings have officially clinched the NFC North, those talks can begin to ramp up.

[brid autoplay=”true” video=”1207897″ player=”26281″ title=”7%20Big%20Storylines%20for%20Colts%20at%20Vikings” duration=”691″ description=”Dustin Baker chats about the seven items to watch this weekend during Colts at Vikings./usr/local/bin/yt-dlp/yt_dlp/ FutureWarning: Possible nested set at position 18″ uploaddate=”2022-12-16″ thumbnailurl=”” contentUrl=”//″ width=”16″ height=”9″]

While the Vikings mounted a 33-point comeback in Week 15, the Detroit Lions mounted a comeback of their own against the New York Jets. It wasn’t quite as dramatic as Minnesota’s, but Detroit overcame a four-point 4th quarter deficit in the final two minutes of the game, defeating the New York Jets on the road by a score of 20-17.

Detroit has now won six of their last seven games, including a victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Week 14, and they are officially fully in the playoff discussion. Even a month ago, if you had uttered that sentence, people likely would have scoffed. Detroit got off to a 1-6 start, and they statistically had one of the worst defenses in NFL history.

Vikings-Lions Preview
Dec 4, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Lions defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (97) celebrates a sack with linebacker Malcolm Rodriguez (44) against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the second half at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

Now, they are 7-7, on a three-game winning streak, and have to be considered one of the hottest teams in the NFL. After the New York Giants defeated the Washington Commanders on Sunday night, Detroit now sits half a game behind Washington for the seventh and final spot in the NFC playoff bracket.

In that same seven-game stretch, the Vikings have gone 5-2, but they’ve had to escape multiple times with heroic comebacks. They also fell behind by double-digits to these Lions, but the offensive firepower from Detroit was simply too much for Kirk Cousins and Co. to overcome.

If Minnesota can win out, they will hold onto the No. 2 seed in the playoffs, staving off the Brock Purdy-led San Francisco 49ers. This requires victories over the New York Giants at home, and then road wins over the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears.

Dec 11, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) is unable to make a catch in front of Detroit Lions cornerback Jerry Jacobs (39) during the second half at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

On the other side, the Lions have games at Carolina, home against the Bears, and at Green Bay. Their road to postseason play is a little murky, especially a road game against Aaron Rodgers, but Washington’s road isn’t any easier. They have a road game against the San Francisco 49ers this week before heading back home to take on the Cleveland Browns and Dallas Cowboys.

Nothing is set in stone at this point, of course, but the path is certainly set for a rubber match between the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings when January arrives.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.