If you have followed the first half of the Minnesota Vikings season, you are well aware of the fact that it has been one of the most up-and-down seasons in recent memory for a team that seems to have rollercoaster-type seasons on an annual basis.
The year started with the Vikings disappointing early on, only to turn things around and perhaps save the season with a few big wins as of late. Now through 12 weeks, Minnesota is back to having the season teetering on the edge of being a playoff team to being on the outside looking in with just a half-dozen games remaining.
It has certainly been a rollercoaster for the Vikings, but the season isn’t over just yet. Going into Week 13, Minnesota is in the heart of the playoff picture and could make a strong push to the postseason. But that task won’t be easy, and it’s likely that we will continue to see a rollercoaster take place for the Vikings and their fans to round out the regular season.
Minnesota Vikings Schedule May Result in Rollercoaster Finish
Minnesota was able to get through a rough stretch in the middle of the regular season to enter Week 13 with a record of 5-6 overall and still in a spot to claim one of the final two NFC playoff spots. And at first glance at the rest of the year, there are very winnable games on the remainder of the Vikings schedule that could play in their favor.
Remaining Minnesota Vikings Schedule
- Week 13 at Detroit Lions
- Week 14 vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
- Week 15 at Chicago Bears
- Week 16 vs. Los Angeles Rams
- Week 17 at Green Bay Packers
- Week 18 vs. Chicago Bears
As seen above, the final six games are filled up primarily with NFC North opponents, with a mix-in of an AFC opposition on Thursday Night Football in Week 14 and a battle against one of the top NFC squads in a non-divisional showdown in Week 16. Other than that, Minnesota will play the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers once each, along with the Chicago Bears twice.
Although the Vikings will likely be favored in a majority of their remaining games, we all know the NFC North never disappoints and every battle between inter-divisional opponents is a close one regardless of the record of either team. That alone makes the rest of the season interesting in the eyes of Minnesota.
The other aspect worth keeping an eye on outside of Minnesota’s schedule itself is the Vikings place in the NFC postseason picture, a race in which they are right in the middle of through 12 weeks in the regular season. That’s another aspect that makes fans sit on the edge of their seats with every play each week while watching the purple and gold.
At 5-6, Minnesota is firmly in the hunt for the sixth and seventh spots in the NFC, trying to beat out other teams such as the San Francisco 49ers, Washington Football Team, New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons, Philadelphia Eagles, and Carolina Panthers.
Not only will it likely be an up-and-down remainder of the regular season with every game counting from here on out, but the Vikings will also be scoreboard watching with other teams to see exactly where they stand in the NFC playoff picture each week.
This Is Still the Vikings
The ultimate reason and perhaps the biggest reason why it is likely to expect the rest of the regular season to be a rollercoaster for Minnesota is, well, this is the Vikings. It’s inevitable.
In the past, there have been too many instances where Minnesota put itself in a position to potentially reach the playoffs or even make a run in the postseason, to only have those hopes end in brutal fashion and disappointment. This year has been an addition to past examples, with the view of the state of the Vikings team shifting game-by-game through 12 weeks.
The Vikings will likely stretch this suspense out until the final few weeks of the regular season or perhaps even the last game of the year in Week 18, much like we’ve seen in the past. And every follower of Minnesota knows how that is likely to finish, with hope ending in crushing disappointment.
Maybe this year is different. Maybe the relatively light Vikings schedule to close the season can play to their advantage with a playoff push. But it’s far more likely that Minnesota’s conclusion to the year will be another rollercoaster, as we have seen throughout history and once again to this point in the 2021 season.
Main Photo: Embed from Getty Images