Can the Vikings Win the NFC North? There’s a Small Chance
The Packers loss (awesome) this past Sunday put the Vikings and the Packers in a tie, record wise, for the top spot in the NFC North with an 8-3 record. But, the Packers actually lead the division with their earlier win against Vikings.
So what needs to happen for Minnesota to win the NFC North? I can tell you this...it's going to take a miracle. Alright, maybe not a miracle but definitely some luck.
There are 5 regular season games left and the Packers have an easier schedule than our beloved purple. Here's what's left:
Vikings Schedule Packers Schedule
@ Seahawks @ Giants
vs Lions vs Redskins
@ Chargers vs Bears
vs Packers @ Vikings
vs Bears @ Lions
One thing is for sure. The Vikings/Packers game December 8th is a must win for the Purple. Based on schedule, there is a good chance the Packers win their other games. There is very little room for error here and Monday night's game for the Vikings against Seattle is HUGE.
Basically, the Vikings will probably have to run the table to win the division.
But let's just say the Vikings lose to the Seahawks on Monday but they win the rest of their games - and the only Packers loss for the rest of their season is against the Vikings. The season ends in a tie.
The first tie-breaker is head-to-head. If the Vikings win against Green Bay, it would be a series split with both teams beating each other.
The second tie-breaker is division record. Currently, the Packers are 3-0 in the division and the Vikings are 1-2. If the Packers beat both Chicago and Detroit, but lose to MN and the Vikings beat Detroit, Green Bay and Chicago, that would put the Packers at 5-1 and the Vikings at 4-2. Green Bay wins the division barring a loss to one of those other teams. The Packers would have to lose to the Lions or Bears to get to the third tiebreaker.
The next tie-breaker is best record against common opponents. This is rarely ever needed to determine a division winner, but it's one that the Vikings have the advantage in. They are currently 5-1 with one common opponent game to go, and the Packers are 3-2 with two to go.
It's a long-shot the Vikings can win the North. It's looking like the Vikings' Green Bay loss and the Patrick Mahomes-less Kansas City loss will come back to bite them.
What's really weird is the Vikings could finish 12-4 and still be a wild card.
Let's hope the football gods are on our side. Skol Vikings!