John DeShazier's keys to a Saints victory over the Vikings

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Vikings defeat Saints 29-24

But Minnesota Vikings fans know where they're headed if the Vikings beat the New Orleans Saints on Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium in the NFC divisional round.

A sellout and vocal crowd will be ready to do its part in what will be the Vikings' first divisional home game since 2009.

Despite being NFC Division leaders, the Eagles are actually considered an underdog this post-season with the devastating injury QB Carson Wentz sustained earlier in December. Lost for the season, it was roundly assumed that his understudy, Latavius Murray, who was underwhelming in exhibition games, would not be able to revive what had been a awful Minnesota running game the year before.

That's the kind of the hostility they would like to continue when Drew Brees and Co. come to town.

Coaches: Saints' head coach Sean Payton: 7-4 in postseason play...Vikings' head coach Mike Zimmer: 0-1 in postseason play... Including playoffs, 20 INT in 17 games in '17 (9 INT in '16)...VIKINGS: Off last week...13-3 record, won NFC North in '17 (8-8 in '16)...

There are only eight teams left with Super Bowl LII aspirations. The Saints, just like the Vikings, have a top-10 defense. Four months ago on a Monday night at Minnesota (Week 1), Vikings managed a 29-19 win - snapping a four-game overall losing streak in this series... Additionally, these two will need to be on their game in order for the Saints to go on in playoffs. "We've found out who we are".

"Yeah I mean we were trying to figure ourselves out that first game so I think now obviously without you know, that cloudy rotation in the backfield, it's me and Mark (Ingram)". They ranked first in yards per play, second in passing defense, second in rushing defense and they were first in third-down conversion percentage. "We're just going to watch the game", linebacker Nigel Bradham said. However, the Carolina Panthers shut down the Saints rushing attack in the wild card game, but quarterback Drew Brees threw for 376 yards and two touchdowns in the 31-26 win. The home field adds at least three points to the Vikings' score, and the fans there will be as loud as they've ever been.

They say you should never let a fleeting hullabaloo divert you from the enduring issues of debate.

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