4 previous times the Vikings started 6-6 and everything that happened after

How did the Minnesota Vikings fare the last four times the team started 6-6?

Former Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson
Former Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson / Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
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1. 2007 Season

  • Final Record: 8-8
  • Playoffs?: No

The Vikings began the year by drafting former Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson and former South Carolina receiver Sidney Rice. However, neither rookie could help Minnesota quarterback Tarvaris Jackson overcome an inconsistent season.

The Vikings opened the 2007 season with a resounding 24-3 win over the Atlanta Falcons before dropping their next three games. After their bye week in Week 5, the Vikes beat the Chicago Bears and then won four of their next seven to reach 6-6.

During this stretch in the schedule, Jackson played just well enough to keep Minnesota competitive, and Peterson ran roughshod over opponents.

At one point, everything was clicking, and the Vikings won five straight to improve to 8-6. Then Minnesota dropped out of playoff contention altogether by losing to Washington and Denver during the final two weeks of the season to finish with an 8-8 record.

That year, the Vikings had the odd distinction of having the best run defense in the NFL (74.1 rushing yards allowed per game) but the worst pass defense in the league (264.1 passing yards allowed per contest).