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NFL Expert Picks: Vikings Home Underdogs vs. 49ers in 'Monday Night Football' Battle

There's a certain level of comfort when you're at home. That sentiment rings true in athletics as well; winning games at home usually plays a vital part in dictating a team's success.

Traditionally, the Vikings have been one of the better teams in the NFL at home.

Minnesota ranks sixth in all-time win percentage (.638) in regular-season games with a record of 304-172-4 when hosting an opponent.

Since U.S. Bank Stadium opened in 2016, Minnesota has a regular-season record of 39-21 at home, which is tied for the eighth-highest win percentage in home games.

This season, however, the Vikings have struggled within their friendly confines. Minnesota has dropped all three of its games at home and has averaged only 20.3 points per game while allowing 25 points per game to opponents. Will Ragatz of Sports Illustrated noted the Vikings have never gone 0-4 at home to start the season:

Minnesota (2-4) will face a tall task to try to avoid that mark, as the Vikings host the San Francisco 49ers on Monday Night Football. The Niners started their season 5-0 before falling to Cleveland 19-17 last week. Prior to its first loss, San Francisco had scored at least 30 points in each of its first five games and defeated teams by an average of nearly 20 points per game.

The Vikings and the 49ers have met coincidentally 49 times in their history, with San Francisco holding a slim 25-23-1 advantage. The 49ers have won five of the six postseason matchups between the two teams, with the lone Vikings victory coming on Jan. 9, 1988.

The 49ers have claimed three of the past five meetings – all in San Francisco – including the NFC Divisional Round game on Jan. 11, 2020 (27-10) and the most recent matchup on Nov. 28, 2021 (34-26). The Vikings are 15-9 when hosting the 49ers and have won six consecutive games against San Francisco, a run that began in 1994. Minnesota's most recent win at home against the 49ers was Week 1 of the 2018 season in Kirk Cousins' debut in the purple and gold.

Let's see who the experts are picking to win the game:

49ers 29, Vikings 20 – Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

The 49ers, who lost to the Browns Sunday, are back on the road against the Vikings, who beat the Bears last week. The 49ers are banged up on offense and might be without Christian McCaffrey and some other key players. This game will be about the San Francisco defense. The front will force Kirk Cousins into some key mistakes that lead to points.

49ers 31, Vikings 13 – Gennaro Filice,

Why Gennaro is taking the 49ers: Kirk Cousins in prime time is bad (SEE: 11-18 career record). Kirk Cousins on Monday night is worse (2-10). So how about Kirk Cousins on Monday night facing an angry 49ers team that just suffered its first loss? Oh, and did I mention that Captain Kirk will be missing the best wide receiver on Planet Earth? In the Vikings first game without Justin Jefferson this past Sunday, they only managed 220 total yards against Chicago's shoddy D, converting just two of 13 third-down attempts. Not encouraging with the mighty Niners rolling into town. Minnesota hasn't won a game at U.S. Bank Stadium since last Christmas Eve. Somebody check the Gjallarhorn.

49ers 28, Vikings 16 – Staff, Bleacher Report

Last week, the San Francisco 49ers found themselves on the wrong side of an upset in a 19-17 loss to the Cleveland Browns, who started quarterback P.J. Walker in place of Deshaun Watson (shoulder).

To make matters worse for the 49ers, running back Christian McCaffrey (oblique), wideout Deebo Samuel (shoulder) and left tackle Trent Williams (ankle) suffered injuries during the game.

49ers 24, Vikings 20 – Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News

The 49ers are hurting badly around Brock Purdy as Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel and Trent Williams are all hurting. The offense is shorthanded and needing to pivot through ground and air. They can find enough to exploit the Vikings pass defense with George Kittle, Brandon Aiyuk and others and catch a little break from no Justin Jefferson to bother their pass coverage. Nick Bosa and the defense make the difference here.

49ers 25, Vikings 19 – Bill Bender, Sporting News

Christian McCaffrey (oblique) and Deebo Samuel (shoulder) are dealing with injuries, but Justin Jefferson (hamstring) is still out for the Vikings. That puts a little more on Brock Purdy and Kirk Cousins. The 49ers will need to bounce back, but the Vikings have not lost at home by more than a touchdown under second-year coach Kevin O'Connell. Keep an eye on those injury reports.

0 of 7 experts pick the Vikings, The MMQB

0 of 6 experts (4 of 10 total had not submitted) pick the Vikings, ESPN

"Straight-up consensus" from seven experts: 49ers, Bleacher Report