November 21, 2018 / 9:06 PM / 24 days ago

Vikings' Zimmer looking forward to turkey and wine

Nov 18, 2018; Chicago, IL, USA; Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Zimmer during the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Bears: Because of his mastery of the Bears’ offense, a byproduct of utilizing the scheme in some variation with the Kansas City Chiefs (2013-15) and Philadelphia Eagles (2016), and the way he played in the 2018 preseason, Chase Daniel has a lot of confidence behind him should he start Thanksgiving Day at Detroit. “He is uber-prepared every single day, every single rep to go out there and compete in practice, in meetings, in all of the things,” Bears offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich said of the backup quarterback. Mitchell Trubisky (shoulder) is doubtful, meaning it could be time for Daniel to make his third career NFL start. In his career, Daniel is 51 of 78 for 480 yards with one touchdown, one interception and an 81.1 passer rating.

Detroit Lions: Running back Kerryon Johnson and wide receiver Marvin Jones were ruled out of Thursday’s game against the Chicago Bears due to knee injuries. Neither player was able to practice, and their absence leaves quarterback Matthew Stafford and the Lions without two of his best weapons. The Bears lead the NFL in run defense, which invites speculation that Theo Riddick, a third-down back, could get more playing time than bruising short-yardage back LeGarrette Blount. Blount said he’s looking forward to more chances. He has only 183 rushing yards through 10 games in a season he described as “not the best.” Fullback Zach Zenner could also see his role increased.

Green Bay Packers: Cornerback Xavier Rhodes and wide receiver Davante Adams are headliners in round two of Packers-Vikings on Sunday night. Defensive coaches in Minnesota aren’t tipping their hand, but the Vikings allowed Rhodes to shadow Adams all over the field in the first meeting this season, when Adams caught eight of the 12 passes intended for him and finished with 64 yards and a touchdown. “You’re looking at two Pro Bowl-caliber players. That would definitely be a matchup everyone will be paying attention to,” Packers head coach Mike McCarthy said.

Minnesota Vikings: With no game on Thanksgiving Day — a far cry from his 13 years as an assistant with the Dallas Cowboys — Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer adjusted the team’s schedule to open Thursday afternoons the rest of the season. That includes the holiday, which Zimmer said he looks forward to because of one combination primarily: “Turkey and wine, red wine,” he said Wednesday. The Vikings return to the field for another prime-time game after losing Sunday night at Chicago, and draw Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. Zimmer said playing good teams has caused quarterback Kirk Cousins to play poorly in prime-time spots more than anything. “We’re playing good teams, might be the real factor,” Zimmer said.

—Field Level Media

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