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Game Scout: Vikings at Seahawks

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Minnesota Vikings (2-7) at Seattle Seahawks (9-1)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET, at CenturyLink Field, Seattle - TV: FOX

*TV announcers: Chris Myers, Tim Ryan, Jennifer Hale

*Keys to the game: The Vikings have seen improved play from Christian Ponder, who has completed 35 of 51 passes for 289 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions since returning to the lineup Oct. 26. Here's the catch: to beat the Seahawks the Vikings must use RB Adrian Peterson to attack the middle of Seattle's defense that has suffered from assignment breakdowns when loading the box with eight defenders - which opponents do 79 percent of the time Ponder is under center. Peterson has just 19 carries when the Vikings are in the shotgun this season - but that's clearly when Ponder is his most comfortable. Seattle's offense welcomes back WR Percy Harvin as it also gets healthier along the line. After getting just eight carries in St. Louis, RB Marshawn Lynch has 45 carries for 270 yards over the past two games as Seattle gets back to the power ground game that led its late-season charge a season ago.

*Matchup to watch - Vikings NT Kevin Williams vs. Seahawks C Max Unger: Williams is coming off his first multi-sack game since 2009 as he registered 2.5 while playing nose tackle against Washington. The Vikings are thirsty for an interior push, so expect to see more of Williams at the nose with increased snaps for rookie Sharrif Floyd starting in Williams' old spot.

*Player spotlight - Seahawks WR Percy Harvin: Activated Monday, Harvin is expected to make his Seahawks debut against his former team. Does the Vikings' history with Harvin help? Not much. As coach Leslie Frazier put it, "we have no idea of what they're going to do with him."

*Fast facts: Peterson rushed for 182 yards and two touchdowns in the last meeting, a 30-20 Seahawks victory in Seattle. ... Seahawks QB Russell Wilson is 12-0 in his career at home with a 114.5 passer rating.

WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson doesn't lose at home - at least, he hasn't yet through two NFL seasons, and with WR Percy Harvin added to the fray the emerging offense should produce more than enough to overcome whatever damage Adrian Peterson does to Seattle's hit-and-miss run defense.

*Our pick: Seahawks 27-17

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