My, how times have changed for the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings since they faced off in the wild-card round of the NFC playoffs. The two teams clash tonight in NBC’s Sunday Night Football game, the fourth time these teams have met in the past 11 months. Tonight at 8:30 EST / 5:30 PST, the Vikings will take to Mall of America Field with their second starting quarterback in as many weeks, while the Packers will be looking to extend their lead in the NFC North. The game’s bound to be popular on live TV, or you can watch Sunday Night Football online free streaming live using one of several different methods.
Christian Ponder, the former Vikings starting QB, will get the starting nod once again for tonight’s Sunday Night Football game, as Josh Freeman has been forced to sit out with a concussion. Ponder’s played horribly this season, leading the Vikings to sign and designate Freeman as the one who’ll hand the ball off to running back Adrian Peterson. But the Ponder we may see tonight against the Packers may be a changed man, since he’s told ESPN that tonight’s start is a one-time event before Freeman returns and thus he feels like there’s nothing to lose.
The visiting Green Bay Packers, meanwhile, are nice and stable with starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers has had a decent season through seven weeks, going 143-220 for 1,906 yards and 13 TDs, numbers that have earned him the 14th slot on the league-wide QBR list. But it’ll be interesting to watch Sunday Night Football online free streaming live as the Packers go up against the Vikings tonight, because Rodgers will likely have fewer targets at his disposal, with Randall Cobb on the injured list and tight end Jermichael Finley out after a serious neck injury in Week 7.
On paper tonight’s Sunday Night Football game on NBC should be a blowout. The Green Bay Packers have the league’s 15th-ranked defense, which will take the field against just the NFL’s 25th-ranked offense of the Vikings. Things only get more lopsided from there, with the Packers having the NFL’s sixth-ranked rushing game, fourth-ranked passing game and second-ranked overall offense. Keep in mind, the top-ranked offense belongs to the Denver Broncos and record-setting QB Peyton Manning, so Aaron Rodgers and the 4-2 Packers have had an outstanding year. The Minnesota Vikings, meanwhile, have only one statistical category in the top 20 (Rushing, at slot 19), and even that’s a disappointment considering Adrian Peterson is their featured back.
Peterson hasn’t played as expected this season, partially because right tackle Phil Loadholt and fullback Jerome Felton haven’t provided the same level of blocking as Peterson’s had in years past. Pro Bowl left tackle Matt Kalil and center John Sullivan also aren’t playing at their All-Pro levels from last season, which has left Peterson high and dry. Of course, the Vikings haven’t had a productive quarterback all season either, which has allowed teams to zero-in on Peterson and the running game.
To see the Green Bay Packers head into Mall of America Field against the Minnesota Vikings, you can watch Sunday Night Football online free streaming live on DirecTV’s website if you have the NFL Sunday Ticket Package. The package requires a subscription, but anyone can watch the live streaming version free if they have it. This melee in the Midwest is always a showdown. Tonight’s NFL Week 8 Sunday Night Football game starting at 8:30 EST / 5:30 PST promises to be no different.