Today's games

December 26, 1998

Minnesota (14-1) at Tennessee (8-7)

Time: 12: 35 p.m., chs. 45, 5.

Line: Vikings by 7.

Vs. spread: Vikings 10-4; Oilers 8-7.

Outlook: Having wrapped up home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs, the Vikings might not have much motivation for their finale. However, they need 12 points to become the highest-scoring team in NFL history, surpassing the 1983 Washington Redskins. An Oilers defense that ranks 14th in the NFL would have trouble with the Vikings' high-octane offense on a good day, but with two defensive linemen and free safety Marcus Robertson hurting, Randall Cunningham, Randy Moss and Robert Smith should have a field day.

Notable: Vikings can match the 1984 49ers and 1985 Bears for most regular-season wins (15).

Injuries:

VIKINGS: Out: WR Jake Reed (back). Doubtful: LB Kailee Wong (ankle). Questionable: LB Dixon Edwards (back); WR Robert Tate (hamstring); WR Chris Walsh (knee). Probable: WR Cris Carter (calf); C Jeff Christy (hand); QB Randall Cunningham (hand); WR Randy Moss (ankle); T Todd Steussie (knee); T Korey Stringer (groin).

OILERS: Questionable: DE Kenny Holmes (ankle/foot); DE James Roberson (ankle); S Marcus Robertson (appendectomy); CB Samari Rolle (knee/hamstring); RB Rodney Thomas (hamstring).

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Statistical comparison:

Off. Def.

NFL RANKINGS Total Rush Pass Total Rush Pass

Minnesota 2 10 1 13 11 20

Tennessee 10 8 16 14 9 21

Yds. Yds.

PER GAME Pts. Rush Pass TO Sacks

Minnesota Off. 35.3 122.2 272.9 1.3 1.3

Def. 18.7 101.6 212.5 2.3 2.4

Tennessee Off. 20.9 125.9 201.2 1.3 2.2

Def. 19.6 100.5 218.4 1.2 2.0

Kansas City (6-9) at Oakland (8-7)

Time: 4: 05 p.m., chs. 13, 9.

Line: Raiders by 3.

Vs. spread: Chiefs 6-9; Raiders 7-8.

Outlook: Chiefs QB Elvis Grbac, who has not started since Nov. 8, will get the nod because of Rich Gannon's knee injury. The Raiders have the NFL's fourth-best pass defense, so the Chiefs will need a big game from former Ravens RB Bam Morris (six TD runs in the past five games). Wade Wilson will start at quarterback for the Raiders, who will be in trouble if RB Napoleon Kaufman (groin) can't go. There was talk of rookie CB Charles Woodson getting some time at receiver, but coach Jon Gruden has nixed that idea.

Notable: Raiders will miss the postseason for a fifth straight season.

Injuries:

CHIEFS: Out: G-T Pete Swanson (abdomen). Questionable: CB Dale Carter (arm); T Jeff Criswell (foot); QB Rich Gannon (foot/knee); LB Jerrott Willard (hamstring). Probable: WR Derrick Alexander (knee); LB Donnie Edwards (hip); WR Kevin Lockett (ankle); RB Bam Morris (toe); DE Leslie O'Neal (thigh); G-T Glen Parker (knee); C-G Jeff Smith (knee).

RAIDERS: Out: S Eric Turner (foot). Doubtful: QB Jeff George (groin). Questionable: DT Grady Jackson (shoulder); RB Napoleon Kaufman (groin). Probable: G Darryl Ashmore (wrist); LB James Folston (hamstring); S Anthony Newman (toe); CB Marquis Walker (elbow).

' Statistical comparison:

Off. Def.

NFL RANKINGS Total Rush Pass Total Rush Pass

Kansas City 21 25 17 10 22 6

Oakland 18 13 23 4 15 4

Yds. Yds.

PER GAME Pts. Rush Pass TO Sacks

Kansas City Off. 19.7 95.6 200.1 1.9 2.5

Def. 22.6 121.9 180.3 2.1 2.2

Oakland Off. 17.6 112.5 187.1 2.7 4.1

Def. 21.7 103.7 174.8 2.1 2.7

Pub Date: 12/26/98

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