EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. The Minnesota Vikings have talked this week about the challenges in the short turnaround required to play Thursday night in front of a national TV audience, taking on a second game four days after beating the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
There's the physical challenge of recovering in time to play another bruising contest. Cold tubs and treatment were even more valuable this week. There's also the mental challenge of preparing for a new opponent, one Minnesota doesn't see often in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who have a new coach since the two teams met early last season.
There's an inherent advantage for the 5-2 Vikings this week, though, in hosting Tampa Bay.
"I think it's a huge advantage," defensive end Jared Allen said Tuesday. "I mean, I couldn't imagine getting on a plane tomorrow, just from the standpoint of bumps and bruises, swelling on airplanes. Traveling is tough. So I'm glad at least we have the home game....