The Vikings Are Tantalizingly Close to an NFC North Title

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Nov 13, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) runs with the ball against the Buffalo Bills during second half at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports.

With their Thanksgiving victory over the New England Patriots in primetime, the Minnesota Vikings are tantalizingly close to an NFC North title in 2022. Their magic number is now down to a miniscule amount of two. This means they need either two wins, two Detroit Lions losses (or Packers losses if they find a way to beat the Eagles on Sunday Night Football), or one of each in order to clinch the NFC North.

With it being this low, the Vikings could clinch the division any week now and as early as next weekend. The Vikings host the New York Jets in Week 13 in their final of three-straight home games. A victory in that game and a Lions loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars would get the job done for Minnesota.

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However, even if it doesn’t pan out exactly that way, the Vikings can officially seal the deal the following week. As part of the Week 14 schedule, Minnesota travels to Detroit to take on the Lions in their second meeting of the season.

The Vikings won the first meeting in Week 3 by a score of 28-24, giving them a tiebreaker over Detroit. This is why their magic number sits at two along with the 3-0 record in the division.

By winning the NFC North, the Vikings would secure their first division title since the 2017 season when they advanced to the NFC Championship Game. Ultimately, the Vikings lost to the Eagles 38-7 in that game, and it looks like an increasing possibility that we could see a rematch of that game in this season’s playoffs.

A division title and the No. 2 seed would guarantee the Vikings host at least two playoff games at U.S. Bank Stadium where they are 5-1 so far this season. If the season ended today, their wild card game would be played against the Seattle Seahawks, and hopefully Minnesota can avoid kicking any 27-yard field goals late in the fourth quarter.

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.