As the NFL Playoff picture begins to take shape, fans can watch a crucial clash of NFC division leaders live online as Week 14 of Thursday Night Football pits the 8-4 Minnesota Vikings against the 10-2 Arizona Cardinals in Glendale Arizona. The game could be crucial for both teams, but especially for Minnesota, who are tied atop the NFC North with the Green Bay Packers and who could slip to the bottom of the playoff race with a defeat on the road.
Arizona, on the other hand, is riding a wave of momentum and enthusiasm that now has ESPN placing the Cardinals on the very top of the network’s weekly NFL “Power Rankings,” naming Bruce Arians’ team favorites not just to win their division, but to win the Super Bowl — ahead of the undefeated Carolina Panthers and the defending Super Bowl champions New England Patriots.
There’s no question that the Cardinals are on an impressive run. A win on Thursday night would give the team a seven-game winning streak, the first for the Cardinals, going back to their days in St. Louis, since 1974.
Find out what the CBS NFL Today panel of experts thinks of the Cardinals chances as the group previews the Arizona vs. Minnesota game in the video below.
The Cardinals are also favored to win Thursday’s game against the Vikings by Las Vegas, whose leading sports books have installed Arizona as nine-point favorites to beat visiting Minnesota.
To find out how to watch the Week 14 NFL Thursday Night Football game live online, see the streaming information at the bottom of this article. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:25 p.m. Pacific Time at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, on Thursday, December 10 — 8:25 p.m. Eastern Time.
Though the Cardinals have two losses on their ledger, they have actually posted a higher average margin of victory than the unbeaten Panthers. In fact, the Arizona average victory margin is the highest on the entire National Football League.
Much of the Arizona offensive performance can be traced to an MVP-caliber season from 35-year-old veteran quarterback Carson Palmer, whose career-high 82.58 ESPN Total Quarterback Rating leads the NFL.
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Palmer’s passer rating of 106.3 through 12 games is also his career best and ranks second in the NFL to the Cincinnati Bengals Andy Dalton (107.4). Palmer’s 29 touchdown passes are also second, with only the 31 tossed by the New England Patriots Tom Brady topping Palmer’s total.
For the Vikings, the key to the game — and the key to every Minnesota game — is running back Adrian Peterson, whose 1,182 rushing yards and 98.5 yards per game average are both NFL bests.
Peterson played his only subpar game of the season in Sunday’s blowout 38-7 loss to the resurgent Seattle Seahawks, gaining just 18 yards in eight carries. The Vikings have won all eight games in 2015 in which Peterson has carried the ball more than 16 times, and they have lost all four in which he rushed 16 times or fewer.
“I mean, he’s one of the best in my time, so to be able to stop a guy like that would be huge,” Cardinals linebacker Kevin Minter told ESPN on Wednesday, discussing Peterson. “It’s just, actually doing it is a task. He’s one of the best running backs of our time. It’s like, man, it would be nice.”
Based on the Vikings’ performance so far this year, the Cardinals’ defense will need to put the brakes on Peterson or face defeat.
The Minnesota Vikings vs. Arizona Cardinals Thursday Night Football Week 14 battle of NFC divisions leaders will be streaming to watch live online from the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, with credentials from numerous cable and satellite providers via the NFL Network with streaming video at this link. A live streaming radio broadcast of the Vikings vs. Cardinals can also be accessed via this link.
[Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images]