by Lindsey Young, Craig Peters & Ellis Williams
EAGAN, Minn. - The Vikings will host the Chargers at noon (CT) Sunday in Week 3.
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: Kevin Kugler
Analyst: Mark Sanchez
Sideline reporter: Laura Okmin
Fans who live in the green 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.
Compass Media Networks
Play-by-Play: Chris Carrino
Analyst: Brian Baldinger
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
Los Angeles: SiriusXM 99 or 389/817 in the app
Minnesota: SiriusXM 113 or 232/820 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
Vikings Facing Another Significant QB Challenge | By Ellis Williams
The Vikings are on the second leg of a three-headed elite quarterback gauntlet.
After facing Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts last week, Minnesota is preparing for another premier player in Chargers signal caller Justin Herbert.
"He's the total package," Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores said. "[He's] athletic. And the QB mobility and what that brings to the table as far as just trying to defend it. Along with the pocket presence, along with the accuracy. The deep ball accuracy, the intermediate accuracy, the short accuracy, and then the running element of him being able to scramble and pick up big yardage with his legs, but also extend plays to allow some big-play receivers to get down the field. It's a major challenge."
Herbert and the Chargers offense had issues against the Titans defense last week, losing 27-24. The Vikings know firsthand how difficult the Titans defensive line is to block, thanks to a pair of joint practices during training camp. But it was Tennessee's secondary that appeared to affect Herbert.
Throughout the game, Titans defensive backs would show different coverages based on initial alignment but then switch to an alternative scheme after the snap.
For example, several times in the second half and overtime, the Titans showed man coverage but switched to zone. To further complicate their scheme, Tennessee would start with a two-high safety shell but then roll to a single-deep safety look and drop a robber in the middle of the field.
Vikings Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores is known for his variety of coverage looks. He has played drop-eight coverage (three pass rushers, eight pass defenders) 25 times this season.
Minnesota can build off what the Titans defense did well last week to challenge yet another elite quarterback.
Better protection for pigskin? | By Lindsey Young
Ask anyone among the Vikings coaching staff or locker room, and they'll emphasize - and re-emphasize - one major thing that's hurt them in the first two games: Ball security. Ball security. Ball security.
Minnesota fell 20-17 to Tampa Bay in Week 1, then 34-28 at Philadelphia in last week's Thursday Night Football matchup. Through those two contests, the Vikings are minus-6 in turnover differential - having lost the ball seven times while taking it away just once, an interception of Jalen Hurts. There's certainly frustration regarding self-inflicted wounds and missed opportunities. But, in a weird way, there's also a sense of optimism.
Kirk Cousins spoke to media members Wednesday and said the following:
"If you'd have told me that after two weeks, we'd be minus-6, I would tell you we'd be 0-2. So don't really have to look at much else. That pretty much tells the story. That being said, we're in those games, it comes down to the last couple plays, and there's something encouraging to take from that, but only so much. At some point the bottom line is, you've gotta win."
Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell said the "silver lining" is that the team's lost two games by only a combined nine points.
"That tells me there still is a lot of optimism to be had as far as, if we can make the improvements - and that's an 'if' because we have to stop talking about it and we have to make it a focal point for our team," he said Wednesday.
O'Connell noted the Vikings "do things every day" to focus on ball security and even increased that for this week.
"We're going to do some things to incorporate new aspects, to maybe help with some of the things that we've seen on tape," O'Connell said. "We're going to coach it hard. It was a major message on Monday, major message [Wednesday], as far as what I think it's going to take to win the game for our team.
"And now, we've done enough talking about it," he added. "We've got to come out here at practice and prepare to try to be on the hunt to get our turnover margin back to zero as fast as possible."
Can Jefferson hit trifecta? If not, who gains the most? | By Craig Peters
Although I have curiosity on the Vikings offensive and defensive line, Justin Jefferson can become the first player since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger to post 150 yards in each of the first three games of a season.
As it stands now, he's the fifth player in that timeframe to post 150-plus in the first two games of a season, joining Hall of Famers Charlie Joiner (1981), James Lofton (1983) and Tim Brown (1997), as well as Steve Smith, Sr., (2011).
Jefferson has hit 150 or more in 10 of his 52 career games, tying Hall of Famer Lance Alworth for the most such games in a pro's first four seasons. Alworth did this with the Chargers in the AFL.
The Chargers have allowed 333.0 passing yards per game so far in 2023, including 466 to Miami in Week 1, with Tyreek Hill totaling 215 yards on 11 catches.
A player of Jefferson's status keeps leaders of opposing defenses up at night, worrying about how to best neutralize him.
Sometimes they try multiple defenders, but the Vikings have capitalized by working the ball elsewhere, including on the 10-yard touchdown pass from Cousins to an incredibly wide open K.J. Osborn at Philadelphia, when three defenders converged on Jefferson.
Cousins and the Vikings also have established T.J. Hockenson since acquiring the tight end last November, and Jordan Addison's start with 60-plus yards and a touchdown catch in each game provides another legitimate threat.
If the Chargers devote too many resources to limiting Jefferson, then there are plenty of strong options for Cousins and Co.