by Lindsey Young, Craig Peters & Ellis Williams
EAGAN, Minn. - The Vikings (0-3) will visit the Panthers (0-3) at noon (CT) Sunday in Week 4.
Here are all the ways to catch the action, followed by three things the Vikings.com editorial staff will be watching for during the game.
FOX (FOX 9 KMSP in the Twin Cities)
Play-by-Play: Alex Faust
Analyst: Brady Quinn
Sideline reporter: Megan Olivi
[506 sports map]
Fans who live in the orange areas shown on the map from 506sports.com will be able to watch the game on their iOS mobile devices with the Vikings app or Vikings mobile site (Safari browser only). The Yahoo! Sports app for smartphones and tablets offers another method for viewing live local and prime-time NFL games.
KFAN (100.3-FM), KTLK 1130-AM and the five-state Vikings Radio Network
Play-by-Play: Paul Allen
Analyst: Pete Bercich
Sideline reporter: Ben Leber
Note: The pregame radio show on the Vikings Radio Network will begin at 10 a.m. (CT).
Audio Streaming Option: Catch the audio broadcast on your smart devices through the KFAN channel on the iHeart app.
Catch the Vikings on Tico Sports at WREY "El Rey" 94.9 FM and 630 AM in the Twin Cities and on Tico-Sports.com, elrey949fm.com and Vikings.com.
Play-by-Play: Gabriel Rios
Analyst: Isaias Zendejas
Minnesota: SiriusXM 133 or 384/Or in the app
Carolina: SiriusXM 85 or 226/Or in the app
Click here for the full bevy of options that include over-the-air, cable, satellite, over-the-top and streaming methods.
NFL+ AND NFL+ PREMIUM
Start your free trial of NFL+ today to watch Vikings preseason games live or on-demand.
NFL+ and NFL+ Premium provide all the action when you are on the go. It is available in the NFL app and at NFL.com/plus.
NFL+ is available for $6.99/month or $39.99/year and offers the following:
* Live out-of-market preseason games across devices
* Live local and prime-time regular-season and postseason games on your phone or tablet
* Live game audio (home, away & national calls) for every game of the season
* NFL Films' on-demand content, ad-free
NFL+ Premium is available for $14.99/month or $79.99/year and offers all the NFL+ features and the following:
* Full game replays across devices (ad-free)
* Condensed game replays across devices (ad-free)
* Coaches film (ad-free)
THREE THINGS WE'LL BE WATCHING
How will the Vikings approach the offensive line? | By Ellis Williams
The Vikings offensive line could see some changes soon.
Center Garrett Bradbury has missed the past two-plus games with a back injury. He has been listed as limited in practices on Wednesday and Thursday. The team is hopeful he can return, but Austin Schlottmann is ready to start again if Bradbury is unavailable. According to Pro Football Focus, Schlottmann has allowed just five pressures in two starts.
Head Coach Kevin O'Connell said the team will deploy the five best active players on gameday, even if it takes a few series to sort out.
"I think it's hard to have in-practice, in-season competition to truly have joint practices and a competitive environment where you can see it. We're going against scout looks, and we get great looks from our scout teams, but we've got to try and invest in communication as a staff about what Kup' (offensive line coach Chris Kuper) thinks, [Offensive Coordinator] Wes [Phillips], myself and then just try and make the best decision. If that decision is trying to get a series or two - sometimes, like you'll do with a running back, you predetermine a series, or receiver or guys on defense are always getting rolled in there, I would not be opposed to that at all."
Carolina features two of the game's best defensive linemen. Edge rusher Brian Burns recorded his first sack of the season last week versus a pair of Seahawks backup offensive tackles. Burns, a 2019 first-round pick, has recorded 38 sacks and seven forced fumbles during his four-year NFL career. He's been a Pro Bowler each of the past two seasons.
Defensive tackle Derrick Brown ranks seventh in quarterback pressures (93) this season, trailing only Jeffery Simmons, Justin Madubuike, Jonathan Allen, Javon Hargrave, Arik Armstead and Aaron Donald.
'Antennas up | By Lindsey Young
As the Vikings game plan for a Panthers squad looking to net its first victory, do they change their approach? Do Vikings coaches anticipate the Panthers being more risky in their play-calling, dialing up more trick plays or being more aggressive than usual?
Phillips and Special Teams Coordinator Matt Daniels both spoke to this topic during their Thursday morning sessions with media members.
"I don't think that most guys are going to try to press or reach from a defensive standpoint. [Panthers Defensive Coordinator] Ejiro [Evero], I know him well. You know, ultimately they're trying to find ways to attack us, attack our schemes, and we're trying to do the same," Phillips said. "I don't see him being desperate in any way to do anything that's unsound. They just want to play better."
Daniels mentioned Panthers punter Johnny Hekker, whom he's known since the two were undrafted rookies together back in 2012.
"[Hekker] has a fake [punt] history, so it's already built into the game plan, really, just based off who he is, who the [special teams] coordinator is," Daniels said. "But from a game plan standpoint, I don't think anything changes. We still have that same urgency. We still have that same mindset, that same aggressive mindset that we want to go out and accomplish and positively impact the football game.
"But you do have to be mindful of, not necessarily 'desperation mode' on their end, but how can they find ways to steal possessions or create some type of momentum in the football game if things aren't going their way?" Daniels added. "So we'll have our antennas up and are aware of those types of things and when they might arise."
Can Vikings close first half and start second better? | By Craig Peters
Much can be made about the woeful turnovers the Vikings have had, but the when and where of several giveaways has made them even more excruciating.
O'Connell has emphasized protecting the football and hasn't been shy about the importance of it, even encouraging Vikings players to not let go of it until they are handing it back to the ref.
Another critical juncture of games where the Vikings can dramatically improve is at the end of the first half and start of the second half.
In Week 1, Tampa Bay got the ball at its 39-yard line with 2:39 remaining and drove 61 yards on seven plays in just 1:30. The possession was helped when a neutral zone infraction on Pat Jones II turned third-and-7 into a third-and-2 that was easily converted.
The Vikings tried to respond quickly, but Kirk Cousins' pass to K.J. Osborn was nabbed at the 2-yard line by Christian Izien with 16 seconds remaining.
The Bucs built on that momentum with a 16-play touchdown drive that took the first 8:59 of the third quarter to take a 17-10 lead.
In Week 2 at Philadelphia, the football came out of Justin Jefferson's hands as he was trying to reach for the goal line from the 1 after a 30-yard catch. Review confirmed the football traveled past the goal line just inside the pylon, resulting in a touchback.
Instead of Vikings ball at the 1 with 34 seconds remaining, the Eagles took over at their own 20-yard line and managed to drive 37 yards to allow Jake Elliott a shot at a 61-yard field goal for a 13-7 Philadelphia lead.
The Vikings suffered a sack fumble on the second play of the second half, and the Eagles scored two plays later.
Last week, after Jordan Hicks forced and recovered a fumble to give Minnesota the football at the Los Angeles 45 with 6:02 remaining, the Vikings settled for a field goal with 2:08 left in the first half.
The Chargers cruised 75 yards in 1:21, not facing a third down until the ball was at the Minnesota 1. L.A. didn't convert that short run, but the Chargers went for it on fourth down and completed a touchdown pass from Justin Herbert to Donald Parham, Jr., with 47 seconds remaining.
The Vikings were only able to drive 24 yards and did not give Greg Joseph a shot at a field goal before halftime. Minnesota then punted quickly after gaining 23 yards to start the third quarter.
Minnesota has to do better at the midpoint of games if it is going to dig out of its 0-3 start.