VikesCentric is written by Twin Cities football writers Bo Mitchell of SportsData, Arif Hasan of Vikings Territory, Aj Mansour, who hosts Minnesota Vikings Overtime on KFAN, and Joe Oberle a long-time Minnesota based writer. The VikesCentric crew crunches numbers, watches video and isn't shy about saying what's on their minds.

VikesCentric: Vikings looking for a rare victory outdoors

Posted by: Bo Mitchell under Vikings, Bears, Packers, Leslie Frazier, Vikings fans, Leslie Frazier Updated: January 3, 2013 - 5:35 PM

The Vikings are scheduled to break ground on their fancy new stadium sometime in 2013 – a stadium that will likely have a retractable roof of some kind. That obviously means some of the games at the new joint will be played outdoors.

 
Suggestion: the Vikings might want to work on their "outdoor game" between now and the projected opening of the new digs in 2016 because, well, their record outside of domed stadiums hasn't been so hot the last several seasons. Another suggestion: this might be a good week to begin whatever it is they have to do in order to find a winning formula outdoors.
 
The Vikings are 5-15 in their last 20 outdoor road games. Throw in the snowy game played at TCF Bank Stadium on Dec. 20, 2010 against the Bears and they are 5-16 in their last 21 outdoor games. Of those games, 10 were played with a game-time temp of less than 50 degrees. The Vikings won only three of these "cold" games: once against the Eagles (Joe Webb's finest moment) in December of 2010 and twice against the Redskins (in 2011 and 2010).
 
Oh sure, the Vikings will probably close the roof at the new stadium if the weather gets inclement or the temperature falls below, say, 50 degrees. That's what retractable roofs are for. However, they won't be able to close the roof at Lambeau on Saturday night.
 
Here's where those of us who are old enough to remember might start waxing nostalgic about the glory days at the old Met when opposing teams used to dread coming to play here in the cold. Bud Grant banned space heaters on the sidelines. The players didn't wear gloves… heck, some didn't even bother with long sleeves. Many teams were psychologically defeated the minute they stepped off the plane.
 
Have the Vikings gone soft?
 
I wouldn't ever go that far. These are tough guys capable of enduring all kinds of pain, punishment and uncomfortable conditions. NFL players are, by and large, anything but soft.
 
However, there is something to be said for not being used to playing on grass or overcoming cold, wind and precipitation. The Vikings played 11 indoor games this season. If you don't play outside very often, it's hard to get quickly acclimated to things like bad footing and wind once the conditions get a little sketchy.
 
Yes, the Packers will be playing in the cold on Saturday night as well. The game time temperature is projected to be in the 20's. The Packers players are, for the most part, more used to those kinds of conditions, but it's not like it's always 20 degrees and snowy on the Frozen Tundra of Lambeau Field. We all know it can actually be pretty nice in terms of football weather in this part of the world through much of October, oftentimes longer. Bottom line: the cold and wind will affect both teams.
 
The numbers don't lie, though. The Vikings' record is abysmal outdoors. Moreover, they have won just once in their last six visits to Green Bay.
 
Leslie Frazier apparently has the troops practicing this week with the doors open and the air conditioning cranked at the Winter Park practice facility to replicate some of the cold conditions they'll be dealing with on Saturday. That's great, but it's going to take more than that to overcome the malaise the Vikes generally find themselves in when braving the elements.
 
As if it's not enough they have to contend with the game's best quarterback and play in a hostile environment against a team that rarely loses at home, the Vikes have to overcome this losing trend in games played outdoors. And make no mistake: 5-16 is a strong trend. Vikings fans better hope Frazier devises a game plan for winning outdoors in the cold between now and Saturday night.
 
Who knows? He just might. Not many people thought the Vikings would win their last four games of the season, but they found a way. If the Vikings have proven anything this season, it's "expect the unexpected."
 
 
Bo Mitchell is the VP of Content at SportsData
You can follow Bo on Twitter at @Bo_Mitchell

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Houston 2 FINAL
St. Louis 5
Washington 9 FINAL
Atlanta 8
Miami 5 FINAL
Boston 3
Minnesota 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
NY Yankees 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 1
Baltimore 4 FINAL
Toronto 5
Detroit - LP: J. Mantiply 4 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: C. Torres 5
Cincinnati 5 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 2
Los Angeles 10 FINAL
Milwaukee 1
San Francisco 12 FINAL
Texas 3
Chicago WSox 0 FINAL
San Diego 5
Kansas City 11 FINAL
Cleveland 9
Seattle 4 FINAL
Los Angeles 7
Colorado 0 FINAL
LA Angels 3
Oakland 7 FINAL
Arizona 2
Pittsburgh 3 Bottom 5th Inning
NY Yankees 0
Chicago 56 3rd Qtr 4:06
Indiana 61
Sacramento 75 3rd Qtr 4:10
Orlando 89
Utah 52 3rd Qtr 3:37
Philadelphia 52
Miami 60 3rd Qtr 3:20
Washington 86
Toronto 71 4th Qtr
Charlotte 77
Cleveland 43 2nd Qtr 0:58
Atlanta 53
Boston 38 2nd Qtr 7:30
New Orleans 29
Detroit 24 2nd Qtr 10:54
Houston 29
LA Lakers 21 2nd Qtr 8:58
Memphis 28
Phoenix 21 2nd Qtr
Brooklyn 21
Denver 7:30 PM
San Antonio
Dallas 9:30 PM
Golden State
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New Jersey 1
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Carolina 1
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Ottawa 1
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Detroit 2
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Chicago 0
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Illinois State 71
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Elon 74
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High Point 71
Samford 76 FINAL
UNC Greensboro 81
Northern Ill 38 2nd Half 10:28
Ball State 38
Bowling Green 52 2nd Half 10:48
Buffalo 51
Brown 61 2nd Half 7:07
Dartmouth 50
Toledo 46 2nd Half 8:09
Eastern Mich 62
Akron 59 2nd Half 7:30
Kent State 57
Ill-Chicago 55 2nd Half 4:48
Oakland 56
Miami-Ohio 63 2nd Half 4:26
Ohio 87
Columbia 30 2nd Half 5:43
Penn 38
Cornell 50 2nd Half 3:51
Princeton 57
Central Mich 44 2nd Half 8:46
Western Mich 53
Bradley 39 2nd Half 7:51
Northern Iowa 61
Morehead State 32 2nd Half
Murray State 43
UNC-Asheville 7:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Yale 17 1st Half 4:07
Harvard 15
Furman 6 1st Half 17:58
Citadel 2
Coll of Charleston 7:30 PM
Drexel
Texas Tech 8:00 PM
Baylor
Pacific 8:00 PM
San Francisco
Detroit 8:30 PM
Cleveland State
Belmont 8:30 PM
Eastern Ky
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Indiana State
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Santa Clara
Chicago 9:00 PM
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(21) George Washington 77
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(16) Duke 77
Furman 55 FINAL
(17) Chattanooga 68
Monmouth 61 FINAL
Quinnipiac 82
Michigan State 60 FINAL
(4) Maryland 70
Belmont 65 FINAL
UT Martin 71
Arkansas 36 FINAL
(3) South Carolina 58
Mercer 56 FINAL
East Tenn St 66
Richmond 45 FINAL
Fordham 46
Miami-Florida 61 FINAL
(2) Notre Dame 77
Siena 61 FINAL
Iona 71
Washington St 48 FINAL
(9) Arizona State 67
Ark-Pine Bluff 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 51
(23) Rutgers 57 FINAL
(24) Northwestern 62
Tennessee St 71 FINAL
SIU-Edwardsville 59
Loyola Marymount 50 FINAL
Gonzaga 70
(18) Texas A&M 65 FINAL
LSU 71
Cincinnati 76 FINAL
UCF 66
Saint Josephs 61 FINAL
Dayton 80
UCLA 62 FINAL
(19) Stanford 67
Santa Clara 42 FINAL
San Diego 51
Virginia Tech 43 FINAL
(7) Florida State 82
SMU 59 FINAL
Memphis 71
Lehigh 75 FINAL
Holy Cross 62
(13) Princeton 70 FINAL
Cornell 37
Rhode Island 49 2nd Half 4:01
Duquesne 48
North Florida 33 2nd Half 2:56
(20) Fla Gulf Coast 69
Kennesaw St 40 2nd Half 6:53
Jacksonville 54
USC Upstate 31 2nd Half 6:36
Northern Ky 44
Lipscomb 60 2nd Half 3:23
Stetson 82
Nebraska 50 2nd Half 5:42
(14) Iowa 60
Saint Peters 52 2nd Half 1:59
Marist 57
Navy 57 2nd Half 1:29
Bucknell 43
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(5) Tennessee 55
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Brown 53
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Kansas State 46
Harvard 66 2nd Half 0:32
Yale 61
Houston 7:00 PM
Tulane
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(10) Louisville 6
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UNLV 40
Utah State 8:00 PM
Colorado State
Colorado 8:00 PM
(8) Oregon State
New Mexico 8:00 PM
Wyoming
Minnesota 8:25 PM
Ohio State
(12) Kentucky 8:25 PM
(11) Miss State
San Diego State 8:30 PM
Nevada
Niagara 8:30 PM
Fairfield
Texas Tech 8:30 PM
West Virginia
Boise State 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Washington 10:30 PM
California
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
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