After smothering the Packers and pounding the Panthers, the Vikings have established themselves as the early team to beat in the NFC. Back in prime time, Mike Zimmer's defenders will again show why they should be feared in a decisive win over the Giants. Prediction: Vikings 27, Giants 13

Three big story lines


After sacking Panthers QB Cam Newton eight times, the Vikings lead the NFL with 15. They picked off Newton three times, too, seizing the league lead in takeaways. What will they do for an encore?


LB Alex Boone is expected to start eight days after a hip injury knocked him out of last week's 22-10 win over the Panthers. Now the Vikings need the $27 million man to start playing up to his contract.


Top pick Laquon Treadwell has played only two snaps. The WR ahead of him on the depth chart, Charles Johnson, has three grabs. Is this the week we finally see Treadwell get a significant role?

Two key matchups

WR Stefon Diggs vs. CB Janoris Jenkins

With the Giants banged up in the secondary and possibly without CBs Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Eli Apple, they could ask Jenkins to shadow Diggs, who ranks in the top five in the league in catches and yards.

NT Linval Joseph vs. C Weston Richburg

In addition to being a 330-pound roadblock against the run, Joseph, arguably the top nose tackle in the NFL, has a sack in every game this season. Richburg will have his hands full and will often need a guard to help him out.

One stat that matters

25.7 Percentage of drives ending with a takeaway for the Vikings defense in 2016

The Vikings will win if …

Their pass rush keeps on rolling against Giants QB Eli Manning, who has struggled in his career vs. the Vikings, and their offense has another turnover-free game.

The Giants will win if …

The Vikings, who have trailed by at least a TD in every game, spot the Giants too big of an early lead and the secondary can't stick with Giants star WR Odell Beckham Jr.

Vensel's win probability