The final NFL game on Thanksgiving will feature two teams on the rise. The New England Patriots will take on the Minnesota Vikings in the primetime matchup. The game won't be on Prime Video but will air on NBC starting at 8:20 p.m. ET. It will also stream on Peacock, NBCSports.com, NBC Sports App and NFL+ via mobile.
The Patriots (6-4) have won their last three games due to a strong defense. New England is only allowing 16.9 points per game, which ranks second in the NFL. The Patriots also rank fourth in passing defense, allowing just 188.3 yards per contest. Linebacker Matt Judon is having an All-Pro season, registering 40 tackles, 11 tackles for loss and 13 sacks which is a career-high. He came to the Patriots in 2021 after spending his first five seasons with the Baltimore Ravens.
"He's a very electrifying player," Patriots defensive lineman Deatrich Wise said of Judon earlier this month, per NESN. "Once he gets in the game and he does what he does, the crowd goes crazy, the juices start pumping and everybody just gets after it. Once he makes his play, you can see the morale of the team is building, the confidence of the team rising, our defense getting better and better, playing with more confidence, playing faster. He's one hell of a player."
The Vikings (8-2) are coming off a tough 40-3 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. But the team is still in second place in the NFC and one game behind the Philadelphia Eagles for the conference lead. Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell is looking forward to tonight's game as he's going up against Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who coached O'Connell during his rookie season.
"[Belichick] is one of my coaching influences, regardless of the fact that at the time I knew I was going to get into coaching or eventually become a head coach. Those characteristics, those foundational things you learn there — even in the short time that I was there — have stuck with me," O'Connell said, per the Vikings' official website. "I still have old notebooks with team meeting notes that are always great to go back and look through."