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Steelers @ Vikings Thursday Night Football thread: Minnesota looks to stay alive in the playoff hunt

A loss tonight would all but end the Vikings season

Minnesota Vikings v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

The 5-7 Minnesota Vikings look to keep themselves in the NFC playoff hunt against the 6-5-1 Pittsburgh Steelers to begin Week 14 on Thursday Night Football. As we saw a couple of weeks ago, the Vikings don’t disappoint in the entertainment column. Last week, they lost to Jared Goff.

A loss this week, and the Vikings would have to win out and have some help to sneak into the playoffs. The Vikes are currently the No. 9 seed in the NFC. They’ll be without Adam Thielen tonight, but Dalvin Cook, Patrick Peterson, and both starting linebackers return. The Vikings also had both defensive tackles return to play last week.

Fortunately for Minnesota, they face Ben Roethlisberger on a short week. He’s dealing with shoulder and elbow injuries. This is the first time Big Ben has played on a short week since 2018. Mike Tomlin’s bunch played their rival Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night. The schedule makers didn’t do Pittsburgh any favors. Here’s a nugget: in 15 seasons, Tomlin is 2-5 on the road with three days rest.

The Vikings have one of the biggest home-field advantages in the sport. The Steelers' offense isn’t nearly as effective as their perception would indicate. This should be a win for Minnesota, but they refuse to make any game easy on themselves.