Shanahan: Vikings are ‘toughest defense we’ve faced this year’

The Big Game

SANTA CLARA (KRON) — Playoff day is approaching for the San Francisco 49ers as they prep for their first postseason game of the year.

The Niners (13-3) host the Minnesota Vikings (10-6) Saturday at a sold out Levi’s Stadium.

The highly anticipated NFC Divisional playoff game brings together two great defenses onto one field. And surely head coach Kyle Shanahan agrees.

Shanahan said Thursday that Minnesota’s defense is one of the better defenses in the league.

The Vikings have secured and mastered the team chemistry over the years, and it translates on the field. Eight of their defensive starters have played at least five seasons together under HC Mike Zimmer.

“Anytime you have the scheme that they have with the coaching staff, you have the talent they’ve gotten over the years mainly through the draft, but when you keep those guys and you have a good scheme and talented guys who’ve played together year after year,” Shanahan said. “That’s why I believe they’re the toughest defense we’ve faced this year. And that’s why I think they’re where they’re at.”

Minnesota ranks second in red-zone defense and posts a +12 in turnover margin.

But there’s no doubt that the mastermind in Shanahan has something special saved up for Jimmy G and the Niners’ offense.

The series is currently tied between the two teams. They’ve played each other 47 times, including five postseason games. The teams have each won 23 times and tied once.

Kickoff is set for 1:35 p.m.

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