Prediction No. 10
The Vikings will win the NFC North and lose in the first round of the playoffs
Mediocrity is a killer drug in the NFL. A nine-win team is good enough to create some buzz among its fan base, but it’s not good enough for people to take them seriously. Even when the Vikings won 13 games a year ago, the style in which they did so didn’t make a believer out of anyone.
One year later, the Vikings have subtracted more than they have added, and it’s hard to see them finishing any better than they did last season.
That’s not to say the Vikings won’t be “super competitive.” The NFC North is the perfect division this year, as many teams have undergone changes. With Aaron Rodgers off to New York, the division is wide open and even has some fans believing the Detroit Lions or Green Bay Packers could come away with the division crown.
But the Vikings have the best quarterback, the best coaching staff, and the best players at several positions. While it should be enough to win the division, it won’t be enough to catch up with the San Francisco 49ers or Philadelphia Eagles.
Thus, the Vikings will be stuck in the same position with even more questions. Will this be the last year of Kirk Cousins? Will the Vikings be able to use their cap space to finally fix the offensive line? Will Minnesota try to accumulate draft capital if they get off to a slow start? These are just some of the issues that remain.
But nobody expected this team to win 13 games a year ago, and it's what could make for another interesting season in Minnesota.