Vikings-Packers matchup of the day: Friday

Posted Oct. 22, 2010 @ 4:56 p.m.
Posted By Eric Edholm

Here's a key matchup in Sunday's Packers-Vikings game in Green Bay:

Packers WR Greg Jennings vs. Vikings secondary

Jennings broke out last week with his best performance of the season — six receptions, 133 yards and a TD — but is far from satisfied. He's motivated to keep up his level of play, especially up against a Vikings secondary that is playing fairly well this season and held Jennings to 112 yards combined in two games last season.

Teams clearly were trying to take Jennings away through the first part of the season, either by using safety help over the top or committing their best cover corner to him. And the attention actually is getting tougher without TE Jermichael Finley out there. But Jennings can make plays from anywhere on the field, as is shown by the fact that his past eight regular-season TDs dating back to the start of 2009 have covered an average distance of 43.6 yards. He can get off the jam with quickness, adjust to the ball in the air and run after the catch very well.

The Vikings use a base Tampa-2 defense but will veer quickly from that. If rookie Chris Cook can play this weekend, they will have two good corners to combat the Packers along with LCB Antoine Winfield. And if the Packers shift Jennings inside, Winfield moves to the slot in nickel packages. Opponents have mostly left Winfield alone this season, preferring to go after whomever was on the right side. Cook, though, has flashed and has size and quick instincts. Safety might be a bit of an issue with SS Hussain Abdullah (concussion) a question mark to play; Jamarca Sanford and Tyrell Johnson are the other options there. FS Madieu Williams has been shaky at times in Minnesota.