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Game Preview: Vikings vs. Bengals

Posted Dec 17, 2013

REGULAR SEASON WEEK 16 - MINNESOTA VIKINGS VS. CINCINNATI BENGALS
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2013 - PAUL BROWN STADIUM - NOON CT - FOX

The Minnesota Vikings (4-9-1) travel to play the AFC North-leading Cincinnati Bengals (9-5) on Sunday, December 22 with kickoff scheduled for noon. The Vikings own a 6-5 series lead over the Bengals.

The Vikings put together an impressive offensive attack and snapped the Philadelphia Eagles 5-game winning streak in convincing fashion, 48-30, in Week 15. QB Matt Cassel threw for a team season-best 382 yards and RB Matt Asiata filled in nicely for injured RBs Adrian Peterson and Toby Gerhart with 3 rushing TDs.

Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier received his 1st opportunity as an NFL Defensive Coordinator with the Bengals from 2003-04. During his tenure in Cincinnati he helped the Bengals go .500 in consecutive season for the 1st time in 12 years, coming off a 2-14 campaign in 2002.

NATIONAL TELEVISION: FOX

Play-by-Play: Dick Stockton Analyst: Ronde Barber Sideline Reporter: Kris Budden

LOCAL RADIO: KFAN-FM 100.3/KTCN-AM 1130

Play-by-Play: Paul Allen Analyst: Pete Bercich Sideline Reporter: Greg Coleman

Pre-game Show: Mike Mussman – 10 a.m. CT

KFAN and KTCN serve as the flagship stations for the 72-station, 5-state Vikings Radio Network.

STAT OF THE WEEK
The Vikings 48 offensive points in Week 15 against the Eagles were the most in 32-year history of the Metrodome.

NORSEMAN NOTABLES
• WR Greg Jennings, who is scheduled to make his 100th career NFL start against the Bengals, grabbed a career-high 11 passes for 163 yards and 1 TD in Week 15 against Philadelphia. The 163 receiving yards are the most by a Viking since Sidney Rice, had 201 yards on 11/15/09 against the Lions.
• QB Matt Cassel threw for 382 yards vs. the Eagles, the most by a Viking since Brett Favre’s 446 vs. Arizona on11/7/10. Cassel, who has 2 70 yard TD passes, ties the team record.
• RB Matt Asiata, who rushed for 51 yards and 3 TDs against the Eagles, became the 1st NFL player since Daunte Culpepper (9/3/00) to rush for 3 TDs in his 1st career start.
• In his 1st career start, CB Shaun Prater snagged his 1st career INT against his former team, the Eagles, in Week 15 and will play against his other former team, the Bengals, in Week 16.
• DE Brian Robison and DE Jared Allen each registered 2.0 sacks against Philadelphia bringing both of their season sack totals to 9.0. They can be the 1st Viking duo to each get 10 sacks since 2004 – Kevin Williams (12) & Lance Johnstone (11)
• The Vikings scored a season-high 48 points against the Eagles. It was the 1st time the Vikings topped 40 points since beating the New York Giants, 44-7, on 1/3/10.
• WR/KR Cordarrelle Patterson recorded a team season-high 141 receiving yards against Baltimore in Week 14, including a team season-long 79-yard TD. The 141 receiving yards are the most by a Vikings rookie since WR Randy Moss (163, at Dallas, 11/26/1998).
• Since 2011, special teams coordinator Mike Priefer’s first year in Minnesota, the Vikings are tied with the Ravens, Broncos and Titans for the most combined kick return TDs with 6 (4 kickoff returns, 2 punt returns). The 4 kickoff return TDs lead the NFL.
• Patterson’s 1,199 kickoff return yards are the most in the NFL in 2013 and ranks 3rd all-time among Vikings. His 109-yard kickoff return TD against Green Bay on 10/27/13 is the longest kickoff return in NFL history. He needs 147 kickoff return yards to break the Vikings single-season record (Buster Rhymes, 1,345 in 1985).
• Peterson rushed for 211 yards on a career-high and team record 35 carries vs. Chicago, marking his 5th career game with 200 rushing yards. Peterson’s 5 games of 200 rushing yards are tied for 2nd all-time with Tiki Barber, trailing only trailing O.J. Simpson (6).

VIKINGS-BENGALS CONNECTIONS
• Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier received his 1st opportunity as an NFL Defensive Coordinator with the Bengals from 2003-04.
• Vikings WR Jerome Simpson was a 2nd round draft choice of the Bengals and spent 2008-11 in Cincinnati.
• Bengals strength coach Jeff Friday was a strength coach for the Vikings from 1996-98.
• Bengals DL coach Jay Hayes was the Vikings special teams coach in 2002.
• Vikings CB Shaun Prater spent 2013 training camp and preseason with the Bengals before being released during final cuts. Prater was a 5th- round for the Bengals in the 2012 and spent the entire season on Injured Reserve.
• Bengals C Kyle Cook entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with the Vikings in 2007.

LOCAL CONNECTIONS
• Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph, who is currently on IR, is a Cincinnati native. Rudolph attended Cincinnati’s Elder High where he was named 1st Team All-American by USA Today as a senior TE. Rudolph was also a star bas- ketball player being named his conference’s player of the year 3 times as a prep.

NFL CONNECTIONS
• Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier coached the DBs for the Philadelphia Eagles from 1999-2002 while Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh served as the Eagles Special Teams Coordinator.
• Frazier and Ravens Offensive Coordinator Jim Caldwell spent the 2005- 06 seasons together in Indianapolis where Frazier was the Colts Special Assistant to the Head Coach and Caldwell was the Quarterbacks Coach/ Assistant Head Coach.
• Vikings Offensive Coordinator Bill Musgrave and Ravens Assistant Head Coach/Special Teams Coordinator Jerry Rosburg worked together for the Falcons in 2007 when Musgrave served as Quarterbacks Coach and Rosburg was the Special Teams Coordinator.

COLLEGE CONNECTIONS
• Four players between the two teams played together at Notre Dame. Vikings S Robert Blanton and S Harrison Smith were teammates with Bengals C Trevor Robinson and TE Tyler Eifert.
• Bengals TE Jermaine Gresham was teammates with Vikings T Phil Loadholt at Oklahoma.
• Vikings K Blair Walsh played together with Bengals WR A.J. Green and H-B Orson Charles at Georgia.
• Vikings DT Chase Baker played with Bengals S George Iloka at Boise State.
• Stanford has produced a player on each team - Vikings RB Toby Gerhart and Bengals WR Ryan Whalen.
• Vikings LBs Michael Mauti and Gerald Hodges started on the 2011 Penn State defense along with Bengals DT Devon Still.
• Bengals LB Rey Maualuga was teammates with Vikings DE everson Griffen, FB Rhett ellison and T Matt Kalil during his time at Southern California.

HOMETOWN CONNECTIONS
• Vikings K Blair Walsh and Bengals RB Giovanni Bernard both hail from Boca Raton, Fla. Walsh attended Cardinal Gibbons High School and Bernard attended St. Thomas Aquinas, rival high schools that are both members of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Miami.

VIKINGS BIG DAYS VS. BENGALS
• DE Jared Allen recorded 3 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble against the Bengals on 10/14/07.
• RB Adrian Peterson combined for 137 total yards (97 rushing, 40 receiving yards) and 2 rushing TDs in his lone career game against the Bengals.
• In his first career start against the Bengals, QB Matt Cassel finished 22-of-37 for for 180 yards, 1 TD and 2 INT.

VIKINGS-BENGALS SERIES NOTES
• The home team has won 10 of the 11 matchups between the two teams, including the last 4 games.
• The last meeting took place on 12/13/09, a Vikings 30-10 win.
• This teams met on Christmas Day in 1989, a Vikings 29-21 victory.
• The Vikings only road win in the series came on 9/27/92.

A WIN WOULD...
• Give the Vikings their 7th win in the month of December dating back to 2012. The Vikings currently are tied for 4th in the NFL with a 6-2 record in December in that span.
• Give the Vikings their 3rd win in the past 4 games.
• Give the Vikings back-to-back wins over the Bengals for the second time in the series.


 

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