The Vikings Next Opponent Gets Stronger

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) throws a pass during a joint training camp practice against the Tennessee Titans at Ascension Saint Thomas Sports Park Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. Nas Titans Cardinals 007

The Minnesota Vikings are riding into their bye week on a high note after beating the Miami Dolphins on Sunday. Following that bye, though, the NFC North leaders play a stretch of very important games to ensure they qualify for the 2022 playoff bracket. The first of that stretch of games is against the Arizona Cardinals, and the Vikings next opponent just got a bit stronger.

If you followed the sequence of events on Sunday afternoon, you may have noticed that interim head coach of the Carolina Panthers Steve Wilks and WR Robbie Anderson got into a heated argument on the sideline before Wilks sent Anderson to the locker room. Anderson has been the subject of trade discussions ever since Carolina fired Matt Rhule, and it seems the team-inflicted ejection was the last straw as the Cardinals swooped in to make the trade on Monday morning.

For the Cardinals, the trade became necessary due to the foot injury to Marquise Brown which could keep him sidelined for an extended period of time. Thus far into the season, Brown has been a favorite target for Kyler Murray, recording 43 receptions, 485 yards, and three touchdowns. He’s been targeted six or more times in each of the first six games.

So far, the 2022 season has been a down year for Anderson with the Panthers, recording just 13 receptions for 206 yards and a single touchdown. That said, the entire Panthers offense has been in a funk all year, averaging just 17 points per game.

For his career, Anderson has played a total of seven NFL seasons between the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers. He recorded a total of 368 receptions for 4880 yards and 29 TDs for the two teams.

Of course, the Cardinals haven’t been much better than the Panthers to begin the year, but they’ve been awaiting the return of one of their main weapons, DeAndre Hopkins. Hopkins missed the first six games of the season serving a PED suspension. The star receiver finally returns to the lineup for Week 7 Thursday Night Football matchup against the New Orleans Saints.

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After that, the Cardinals travel on the road to Minnesota to take on the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium in Week 8. When the two teams meet, it’s very likely the Cardinals are running a very different offense than the one they put on the field just this past weekend.

The last time the Cardinals and Vikings met was Week 2 of the 2021 season. Of course, Vikings fans will remember that Greg Joseph missed a game-winning kick at the end of that game. Joseph has struggled at times throughout this season as well, but hopefully this time around, things play out differently for the Vikes.

Kickoff between the two squads is scheduled for 12 PM on October 30th.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing as well as 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 takes, NFL and otherwise, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.