5 keys to Packers beating Vikings in Week 11

The Green Bay Packers can take a commanding lead in the NFC North by beating the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium. With a victory, Matt LaFleur’s team would go up by five wins with seven weeks to go and forge ahead toward a third straight NFC North crown.

Here are five keys to victory for the Packers in Minnesota:

Attack the cornerbacks

(Carlos Gonzalez/Star Tribune via AP)

The Vikings have excellent coverage options at linebacker and safety, but the cornerbacks could provide an exploitable position in the passing game. Former Packer Bashaud Breeland has struggled mightily in a starting role, but he’s questionable to play. If he doesn’t go, the Packers will face matchups against cornerbacks Patrick Peterson, Cameron Dantzler and Mackenzie Alexander. Peterson is returning from injured reserve, and Dantzler and Alexander have both been up and down. If the Vikings focus coverage on Davante Adams, this might be a chance for Marquez Valdes-Scantling to step and create big plays. And don’t forget the slot: the 31-year-old Randall Cobb could look especially quick indoors on the track of U.S. Bank Stadium.

Contain Cook

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Cook has rushed for at least 150 yards in two of the last three games against the Packers, including 163 on 30 carries in last year’s upset at Lambeau Field. Can the Packers front keep him under wraps on Sunday? This will be a great test of the improved players along the defensive line and the ascending inside linebacker duo of De’Vondre Campbell and Krys Barnes. The Packers’ third-ranked scoring defense hasn’t been dominant against the run this season, but they’ve held up fine and tackled exceedingly well. Once again, tackling will be paramount. Cook has forced 32 missed tackles in only seven games this season, per Pro Football Focus. The Vikings have done far more damage in the passing game this season, but Cook can still be a game-changer.

Limit explosive plays

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