After being on the road for what seemed to be an eternity, the Vikings are back at home to face a lowly Denver Broncos team on Sunday.
Minnesota is without four starters, but with the team's bye week coming up, this is a perfect situation for the Vikings to get a big win and get healthy for the stretch run of their season.
Here are three things to watch for, including staff predictions for the game on Sunday.
1. Denver has no shot
The Broncos offense has no shot starting a quarterback in Brandon Allen who has just one career start under his belt.
In the raucous environment of U.S. Bank Stadium, this poor quarterback doesn't stand a chance against Mike Zimmer's defense.
Between Everson Griffen, Danielle Hunter and others, multiple defenders should be feasting from start to finish.
2. Feed Dalvin
Even though Denver's offense is anemic, their defense is still legit.
Their pass defense is one of the best in the league, ranking fourth, as they surrender just 202 yards per game through the air.
Even though Kirk Cousins has been playing better as of late, things will have to go through Dalvin Cook. Despite Denver's pass defense being sound, the Broncos give up 100-plus yards on the ground.
So Cook and Alexander Mattison should be getting the ball a ton.
3. Vikings could take share of first place
With the Vikings having a cupcake in the Broncos on their schedule, the Packers have a tough test squaring off with the 49ers on Sunday Night Football.
So a Vikings win, coupled with a Packers loss, would put the two teams tied on top of the NFC North with five games to play.
However, the Packers have a leg up as they're 3-0 in the division while the Vikings are 1-2, including a loss to Green Bay. Luckily, the Vikings have yet to face the Packers, Lions and Bears at U.S. Bank Stadium.
Declan Goff, BMTN sports writer
Even though the Vikings are without some key starters on Sunday, they should be all over this Broncos team. Cook will be running all over this defense and Cousins should be able to connect on a few shots down the field when needed. I just feel bad for this quarterback who's being fed to the wolves. Regardless, Vikings win big. Final score: 24-7, Vikings.
Joe Nelson, BMTN sports director
I'd actually like Minnesota's chances more if Joe Flacco were starting at quarterback for the Broncos. Brandon Allen is a wild card and that's dangerous, especially when the Vikings are without an elite cover safety in Anthony Harris. Throw in the fact that Denver has a top-10 defense (Minnesota 1-4 against such defenses dating back to last season) with Von Miller on turf and this game has the stuff of nightmares written all over it. Still, its' a home game and the Vikings have outscored opponents 119-55 at home. It's going to be tighter, but the Vikings won't lose. Final score: Vikings 22, Broncos 9
Chris Schad, BMTN sports writer
The Vikings defense hasn't been too great on the road this year, allowing just over 21 points per game. While that's not a gaudy number that's nearly eight points more than they've been allowing at home (roughly 13 points per game). This is great news considering that no team has more home games remaining (four) than the Vikings do in the final six games. With their opening test a punchless Broncos offense that hasn't thrown for more than 200 yards since Week 4, this should be a game the Vikings can manage. Final score: Vikings 23, Broncos 7
Blair Anderson, Vikings superfan
Missed field goals, bad clock management, horrible drops. Guys, I swear the Vikings already played this week. Anyway, Mike Zimmer has had his issues with backup quarterbacks this year as immortal names such as Chase Daniel and Matt Moore have proved to be too much for our defensive guru. But at home, Zimmer's achilles heel is giving potential franchise quarterbacks their one shining moment. Remember when Tim Tebow ran circles around Jared Allen? Or how about when Josh Allen jumped over Anthony Barr like he was a Goomba? And who could forget Mitchell Trubisky looking like a legit NFL QB in Week 17 last year? Where am I going with this? Oh yeah, Brandon Allen is not a franchise quarterback. Far from it, actually. With the Broncos being semi vulnerable on the ground, this should be another good game for Dalvin Cook and the defense should be able to ride it out. Final score: Vikings 31, Broncos 3