For visit by Packers, Vikings present crowd-free, revamped D


FILE – In this Monday, Dec. 23, 2019 file photo, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins throws a pass during the second half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Minneapolis. Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins says he’s unconcerned about catching the coronavirus. He says his worry on a scale of one to 10 is “about a 0.000001.” Cousins made his comments on a wide-ranging interview for an NFL-themed podcast that was released on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King, File)

By DAVE CAMPBELL AP Pro Football Writer
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The most consistent weapon the Minnesota Vikings have drawn against Aaron Rodgers since he became Green Bay’s quarterback has been a defense built around a relentless pass rush and revved up by a raucous home crowd.

The formula might need an adjustment this year. For the first time in the franchise’s 60 seasons, the Vikings had their opener scheduled at home against the rival Packers.

Their defense will have only five starters in the lineup on Sunday carried over from 2019.

There will be no crowd to draw from, either, only pre-recorded noise in a casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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