Vikings look for a bye
The Minnesota Vikings will go in search of a victory against the Chicago Bears on Sunday as they pursue a first round bye in the playoffs.
The Philadelphia Eagles already know that they will take the Wild Card weekend off, and have clinched home field throughout the postseason, but the other bye is still up for grabs.
The easiest scenario is for the Vikings to defeat the Bears at the US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis rendering all other results inconsequential.
However should Chicago pull the upset then the Carolina Panthers could grab the second seed, if results go their way.
Minnesota holds the tiebreaker over the New Orleans Saints and the Los Angeles Rams, having defeated them earlier in the campaign.
However a 31-24 set back to the Panthers in Charlotte in Week 14 could be crucial if the Saints fall to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Rams are beaten by the resurgent San Francisco 49ers.
The Vikings of course have extra incentive this season with the Super Bowl scheduled for February 4th at the US Bank Stadium.
No team in the Super Bowl era has hosted the Super Bowl at their own stadium although the 49ers had a virtual home game, playing the Miami Dolphins at Stanford Stadium in January of 1985 and the Rams lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena five years earlier.
Minnesota eased to their 12th win of the season this week with a 16-0 victory over the Packers at Lambeau Field in Green Bay.
Case Keenum connected on 14-of-25 for 139 yards and a touchdown to lead the way for the Vikings who captured the season series over the Packers for the first time since 2009.
The Vikings are 1.57 to win the NFC Championship, Philadelphia are 2.37 while the LA Rams are 1213.00.
View all American Football lines