Skip to main content

A perimeter matchup as good as it gets

Packers WR Davante Adams, Vikings CB Xavier Rhodes went head-to-head in Week 2, could do so again


GREEN BAY – In a game about matchups, it doesn't get much better than this.

Packers wide receiver Davante Adams and Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes are expected to see plenty of each other on Sunday night at U.S. Bank Stadium.

The former is far and away Aaron Rodgers No. 1 target, while the latter is not only the Vikings' top cover corner but one of the best in the entire NFC.

For the record, back in Week 2, Adams had eight catches on 12 targets for 64 yards and a touchdown.

"They matched him last time, so I wouldn't be surprised if they do it again," Head Coach Mike McCarthy said prior to Green Bay's Wednesday practice. "You're looking at two Pro Bowl-caliber players. That would definitely be a matchup everyone will be paying attention to."

Along with Rhodes, Minnesota's defense features safety Harrison Smith and cornerback Trae Waynes behind a pass rush led by Danielle Hunter's 11½ sacks.

The Vikings' defense is especially tough on third down, where their 28 percent conversion rate allowed is best in the league and five percentage points better than anyone else. Third down has been the biggest problem area for the Packers on offense. At 38.4 percent, Green Bay ranks 19th in the league.

"They're aggressive. They have a tremendous front, and Harrison Smith does a tremendous job with the pre-snap diagnosis," McCarthy said. "They do a good job with disguise … hold things until the last second. They have some playmaking ability and take chances.

"They test you schematically. It's a veteran group, and their anticipation and awareness is very high. This is an excellent defense."

On the flip side, how the Packers match up against the Vikings' receivers could be determined by the health of the Green Bay secondary.

Cornerback Kevin King is working his way back from a hamstring injury. If he's available, that would allow the Packers to use King and rookie Jaire Alexander against Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, which worked well in the first meeting back in Week 2 until King left with an injury.

Minnesota's duo has combined for nearly 2,000 receiving yards this season, and Thielen began the year with eight consecutive 100-yard games.

The Packers are also waiting to see on the health of corner Bashaud Breeland (groin) and safety Raven Greene (ankle) in the back end. McCarthy said several injured players would be rehabbing during Wednesday's practice and he may not know of anyone's potential availability until Friday.

Related Content