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Vikings owner Zygi Wilf: 'We're at the top of the game'

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Instead of playing in Super Bowl LII, the Minnesota Vikings will be playing host this weekend.

It's not the first time Minnesota has missed out on a Super Bowl, but Sunday will mark only the second Big Game played in Minneapolis and the first in the Vikings' shiny new U.S. Bank Stadium. What could have been a historic event, the first Super Bowl to feature the host team, was quickly relegated to yet another disappointment in Vikings history after Minnesota lost handily in the NFC Championship Game.

While Vikings fans won't take kindly to the coming invasion of Eagles sympathizers this week, team owner Zygi Wilf said Monday that Minnesotans should look past this difficult week and stay optimistic regarding the state of their franchise.

"We've been in the business for 13 years and we have our ups and downs," Wilf said, per the Star Tribune. "Sure, it's a couple days but afterward you look at the future and you realize that we're at the top of the game and we'll be knocking at the door many times."

Wilf added that the Vikings are expected to make few changes to the coaching staff that pulled off a 13-win season in 2017, despite losing their starting quarterback (Sam Bradford) and running back (Dalvin Cook) in the early goings. Wilf said Minnesota will "just continue what we're doing with the people we're doing it with, and we'll get there."

"There" is the ever-elusive Super Bowl, in which Minnesota has not played in 41 years despite making six conference championship games since its last berth. In a season riddled by injuries to big names in the NFC (Aaron Rodgers, Odell Beckham, Carson Wentz) and characterized by an upheaval of the previous order, the Vikings had a great opportunity, perhaps their best since 1998, to finally break whatever curse has cast them into football purgatory. But the title game loss flipped that narrative on its head, and now Minnesota enters 2018 with nagging questions at the game's most important position, where all three of its quarterbacks are slated to enter free agency.

2017 might have been Minnesota's best chance in a generation to return to the promised land. Can Wilf and company navigate a tricky offseason in 2018 and keep the Vikings "at the top of the game?"

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