Pregame warmup: Coldest November game in 16 years

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 24, 2013 – 11:00 am

With kickoff about an hour away, here’s the latest from Lambeau Field for today’s Packers-Vikings matchup.

Weather update

With highs in the low 20s for today, this will mark the coldest November game for the Packers since a home game on Nov. 23, 1997, against the Dallas Cowboys. Temperature at kickoff for that game was 22 degrees.

For more on the weather, check out this video:

NFC North implications

The Packers enter the day one game behind the Lions and Bears for the NFC North lead. If all breaks right for Green Bay today, the Packers could end the day tied for first place, but they’d have to win and have both the Lions and Bears lose to the Bucs and Rams, respectively.

As long as the Packers win, they will enter Thursday’s Thanksgiving showdown in Detroit no worse than a game out of first place.

For more on other games that affect the NFC playoff picture today, click here.

Injury update

Both the Packers and Vikings are missing a starting CB today, as Green Bay’s Sam Shields and Minnesota’s Josh Robinson are out. Shields is being replaced in the starting lineup by CB Davon House, while Robinson is being replaced by rookie CB Xavier Rhodes. This will be the second straight game Shields will miss.

Both teams are missing defensive starters in the front seven as well. The Packers are without DE Johnny Jolly and LB Nick Perry, replaced by DE Mike Daniels and LB Mike Neal, respectively. The Vikings are without LB Erin Henderson, replaced by LB Audie Cole.

QB Scott Tolzien starts his second straight game for the Packers in place of Aaron Rodgers, and for the second straight start he’ll also have Marshall Newhouse at RT in place of the injured Don Barclay.

The most significant injury on offense for the Vikings is the absence of TE Kyle Rudolph, who is being replaced by veteran John Carlson. Both RB Adrian Peterson and WR Greg Jennings were listed as questionable for Minnesota on the final injury report, but both are active and will start.

Jennings’ return

Speaking of Jennings, he makes his return to Lambeau Field after seven seasons playing for the Packers. In the first Packers-Vikings meeting this season, at the Metrodome, Jennings caught just one pass for 9 yards.

It is not known during player introductions whether the Vikings will be announcing their offense or defense. If it’s the offense, Packers fans’ reactions to Jennings will be worth noting.

Can the Packers get a lead?

Green Bay hasn’t led at any point in either of the last two games, the first time that’s happened in the Mike McCarthy era in back-to-back games. The last time the Packers led was by a score of 20-17 in the third quarter against Chicago back on Nov. 4.


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