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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Key Matchups: Buccaneers vs. Vikings

Vincent Jackson and Captain Munnerlyn know each other from previous NFC South battles, and they could be paired in another very important matchup this Sunday

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-5) will take on the Minnesota Vikings (2-5) on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Here are several matchups between individual players and/or certain team units that could go a long way towards determining the game's final outcome:

WR Vincent Jackson vs. CB Captain Munnerlyn
The two lined up across from each other three times when Munnerlyn played for the Carolina Panthers. Jackson had 14 catches, 248 yards and a TD in those games. So far this season, Jackson has been targeted 60 times and should see plenty more passes coming his way against this familiar foe, who has 31 tackles and has allowed four TDs this year, according to Pro Football Focus.


Buccaneer quarterbacks have targeted Vincent Jackson 10 times a game this season, so Vikings CB Captain Munnerlyn could be busy this Sunday

S Mark Barron vs. WR Cordarrelle Patterson
WR Greg Jennings leads the Vikings in yards and receptions, but Patterson may be their most dangerous player when the ball is in his hands, averaging 11.2 yards per reception and 16.7 yards per carry with two scores. Barron is second on the team with 45 tackles and will need to continue roaming the field to keep Patterson from breaking off a big play.

DE Michael Johnson vs. QB Teddy Bridgewater
The Vikings have given up 27 sacks, 13 of them coming in rookie Bridgewater's three starts. The Buccaneers have shown that they can get after the quarterback, with an impressive eight hits and 16 hurries against Drew Brees. Faced with pressure, Bridgewater has thrown five interceptions.

Buccaneers RBs vs. Vikings RBs
Doug Martin and Bobby Rainey have combined for 401 rushing yards and three total touchdowns this year. The Vikings' duo of Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon have 559 and four TDs. Both teams will aim to get their run games going early in this game to control the clock and force defenses to crowd the line of scrimmage.

T Anthony Collins vs. DE Everson Griffen
After allowing just one sack in back-to-back weeks against Pittsburgh and New Orleans, the Bucs offensive line surrendered five in Week Six, four of them from OLBs. Coming off the edge this week is Griffen, who is one of seven NFL players with seven or more sacks this season. Collins has to keep his quarterback upright for the Bucs offense to click.

LB Lavonte David vs. S Harrison Smith
David's 65 tackles are fifth in the NFL this year and his 11 tackles for a loss are the most in the league. The ball-hawking Smith has 36 tackles and three picks, one returned for a TD. LB vs S is an awkward duo for a key matchup, but in what could be a defensive battle, the winner might be determined by which of these third-year player takes over the game.

Vincent Jackson and Captain Munnerlyn know each other from previous NFC South battles, and they could be paired in another very important matchup this Sunday.

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