So much has changed since the Vikings and Lions met on October 1 in Minnesota. The Lions have defeated the Vikings three straight times despite scoring a combined four touchdowns.
Well here's why: The Detroit Lions had actually been hosting Turkey Day showdowns since 1935 when the National Football League decided they wanted to add another team, and Cowboys GM Tex Schramm jumped at the opportunity. Second, if the Lions win Thursday, it would give Detroit the same record as Los Angeles. "I'm excited to go up there", said Reiff, who's the softest-spoken member of an offensive line that's as low-key and spotlight-averse as can be.
The Vikings are one of the five best teams in the National Football League right now, winners of six straight and the clear favorite in a division that was blown open for the taking by Aaron Rodgers' broken collarbone. "We had 16, 13 twice and kicked a 60-yard field goal once".
That sounds like a coach who's been thinking about this nearly non-stop since the last time these two teams played back in Week 4, a 14-7 Lions win that was played in Minnesota.
Matthew Stafford of the Detroit Lions scrambles with the ball in the second half of the game against the Minnesota Vikings on October 1, 2017 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
It's not a stretch to call this game a "must-win" situation for both teams if they want to keep their playoff hopes alive. Through the years the Boys have worn every available jersey for the special game, and for those who are curious they'll be in their Navy blues this year again. In their last two meetings, the Vikings have turned the ball over four times and failed to force any turnovers. "We're not anxious about ramifications". "The thing I like the most about Case is he's got big (guts)". We're not anxious about all of the build up and things of that nature. He's not afraid. He's going to pull the trigger and play like that. I don't think the Lions will move the ball well enough against the Vikings defense. We got eight. For me, I have been doing this way too long.
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Vikings quarterback Case Keenum will make his ninth start on Thursday, having taken over after Sam Bradford's knee trouble. The team has also scored 35 or more points in three home dates, but has won and covered in just two of its past five.
They have tough road games to start December against the Falcons and Panthers, but close the season with three very winnable games at home against the Cincinnati Bengals, at the (for now) Rodgers-less Green Bay Packers, and home against the Chicago Bears.
The good news for Caldwell is that whatever he has his team focusing on when they play the Vikings, it seems to be working.
Matt Stafford and the rest of Detroit's offense have looked great during these last few weeks, putting up at least 30 points in each of the last two games.
The good news here is that Mike Remmers looks to be improving from his concussion and has been elevated from Out last week to Questionable this week.