The Minnesota Vikings have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL next season. Fans hoping for a winning season may want to dumb down their expectations a little bit.
Minnesota plays host to the AFC East champion New England Patriots in week two, and that’s just the start of a very tough stretch of football for a team that is said to be in “rebuilding mode”.
The toughest non-conference games on the schedule include New England, New Orleans, Miami, and the New York Jets.
Of course, every conference game is going to be a test for the Vikings.
It will be interesting to see how head coach Mike Zimmer handles this team with such a brutal schedule, especially in his first season.
The positive thing about having this type of schedule is that the young players on the team will need to learn the system and grow up fast. Facing two perennial Super Bowl teams back-to-back in New England and New Orleans to begin the season could be beneficial. To win, the Vikings will have to play their absolute best football, but losses to a couple of the best and most experienced teams in the NFL makes for good film watching during practice.
Normally you can look at a team’s schedule and predict the wins and losses, but each team on the Vikings’ schedule could be solid next season.
St. Louis could be looked at as a win, but the Vikings struggle on the road, and the first game while learning a new system is always difficult. Tampa Bay is improving and may have found a solution at quarterback in Josh McCown who had a nice season filling in for Jay Cutler when he was injured last season. Buffalo and Washington didn’t have the greatest years but each team is loaded with talent, especially Buffalo on defense.
I’m crossing my fingers for the best in 2014, but this is the hardest schedule the Vikings have had to endure in a long time.
On the other hand, the games do need to be played out and the Vikings will continue to improve as the season Marches on.
My prediction is 6-10, but lots of improvements, especially on defense toward the end of the season for Minnesota.
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