Vikings, with newfound life, look to get back to .500 against Packers

The Minnesota Vikings will try to increase their winning streak to three games when they visit the Green Bay Packers on Sunday afternoon.

Minnesota (3-4) is coming off back-to-back victories against the Chicago Bears and San Francisco 49ers. The Vikings have picked up those wins despite the absence of star wideout Justin Jefferson, who remains sidelined because of a hamstring injury.

Now, instead of answering questions about whether the team might trade veteran starters at the deadline, the conversation is focused on the Vikings’ upward trajectory.

“Obviously, our season isn’t going as well as we would like it to be, but nothing better than bouncing back from adversity and stacking wins up,” said Vikings safety Camryn Bynum, who made two interceptions last week. “Now going into (Sunday), it’s the same thing, same process: us being able to really respond.

“That’s really the message for the whole season. We have to respond to the process. We must respond to every negative play and continue to do our thing.”

Meanwhile, Green Bay (2-4) hopes to respond to a fresh wave of adversity.

The Packers have lost three straight games and need a home win over their division rivals to avoid a four-game skid for the second season in a row. More than a month has passed since Green Bay’s last victory, a Sept. 24 win over the New Orleans Saints.

As the losses have mounted, so has the outside scrutiny on quarterback Jordan Love. The first-year starter has posted a subpar 79.4 passer rating this season while completing 57.5 percent of his passes for 1,263 yards, 10 touchdowns and seven picks.

Packers coach Matt LaFleur offered steadfast support for Love this week.

“He’s done enough for me to show me that it’s all right there,” LaFleur said. “The better everybody is around him, the better he’s going to look.

“Our confidence in him is not wavering one bit.”

Much of the Vikings’ recent confidence has come from the emergence of rookie wideout Jordan Addison, who has formed a fast connection with quarterback Kirk Cousins. Addison caught seven passes for 123 yards and two touchdowns against the 49ers, and he has six touchdown receptions in his first seven games.

If Addison makes another touchdown grab this weekend, he will join only five other players in the Super Bowl era who have caught at least seven touchdown passes in their first eight NFL games. The list includes Charlie Brown, who holds the record with eight touchdowns, and four others who caught seven: Marques Colston (New Orleans, 2006), Martavis Bryant (Pittsburgh, 2014), Calvin Ridley (Atlanta, 2018) and Ja’Marr Chase (Cincinnati, 2021).

Both teams are dealing with injuries heading into Week 8.

Minnesota tight end T.J. Hockenson (foot) and linebacker Brian Asamoah (ankle) did not participate in the team’s first full practice of the week. Green Bay was without three players, including running back Aaron Jones (hamstring), tight end Luke Musgrave (ankle) and center Josh Myers (ankle).

This marks the 124th regular-season meeting between the teams. Green Bay leads the all-time series 64-56-3.

The home team has won each of the past four games in the series.