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Minnesota Vikings 2012 NFL Season Preview, Predictions

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Minnesota Vikings
2011 record: 3-13 (Fourth in NFC North)

Fearless Forecast

  • Bucky Brooks

    Adrian Peterson returns to give the Vikings' offense a jolt, but Christian Ponder’s development will ultimately determine if Minnesota has closed the gap on its division rivals.
    Prediction: 5-11, fourth in NFC North

  • Daniel Jeremiah

    Adrian Peterson should be ready to go at the start of the season. That helps! I like the poise of Christian Ponder, and Matt Kalil will be a huge upgrade at left tackle. However, the defense still doesn’t have the secondary personnel to match up inside this division.
    Prediction: 5-11, fourth in NFC North

  • Adam Schein

    I truly like Christian Ponder, but the Vikes are the worst team in the NFC.
    Prediction: 3-13, fourth in NFC North

  • Steve Wyche

    This roster lacks talent across the board, especially on defense. Christian Ponder should improve, but it likely will be in vain.
    Prediction: 4-12, fourth in NFC North

In The Spotlight
Jerome Simpson | #81 | WR

Once Simpson gets past his three-game suspension for a felony drug arrest last fall, he can be the consistent vertical threat the Vikings have lacked in recent years. That would not only give star back Adrian Peterson more room to run, but also help second-year quarterback Christian Ponder find his other weapons like Percy Harvin and rising tight end Kyle Rudolph.

3 Pivotal Games
Week 3 vs. 49ers
Minnesota has two winnable two games (vs. Jacksonville, at Indianapolis) to open the season -- but if Ponder moves the offense efficiently enough to beat a strong 49ers squad, it would give the team confidence in itself as a playoff contender.
Week 12 at Bears
This contest follows the Vikings’ bye and is the second of a four-game division run. Even if they take advantage of a softer beginning of the schedule, any chance at a playoff spot begins and ends with a road win in Chicago.
Week 17 vs. Packers
Whether the Vikings are in the postseason mix or they’re just trying to upset the apple cart for their neighbors to the east, this game will be on their short list of must-wins -- they haven’t beaten their rival at all since 2009.



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