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Vikings-Bills matchup of the day: Thursday

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Recent posts by Eric Edholm

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Posted Dec. 02, 2010 @ 9:03 p.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

Here's another key matchup for Sunday's Vikings-Bills game in Minnesota:

Bills NT Kyle Williams vs. Vikings C John Sullivan

What he lacks in size, Williams makes up for in heart and production. He might not be the way scouts would mold a classic nose tackle on paper, but his play has been nothing short of excellent. Williams is coming off a strong game against the Steelers, near-dominant in fact, in which he recorded 10 tackles, three of them for losses (including two sacks). He chased Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger from the pocket several more times and was a destructive force, often working against a very good rookie, C Maurkice Pouncey.

Sullivan has had an injury-marred season, but he appeared strong on tape Sunday against the Redskins' Maake Kemoeatu. The Redskins' inside rush was negligible, and Sullivan had one of his better games of the season as he has battled through a painful calf that caused him to miss two games. Sullivan is not known as a particularly physical player, being a tad undersized for a modern-day center. But he was extremely physical and active against Washington, even drawing a rare defensive holding call from Kemoeatu.

This will be a fun battle to watch and will be a key, with or without Adrian Peterson in the lineup. With him, Sullivan must pave the way in the zone series the way he did Sunday, because once out in the open, Peterson really could dissect this shorthanded Bills defense. But without Peterson, the power factor will come to the forefront; Sullivan must move Williams and use his aggressiveness and motor against him if Toby Gerhart is the runner.

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