If you asked me six weeks ago who the last undefeated team in the NFL would be, there was no way I would say the Minnesota Vikings. Teddy Bridgewater’s season had just ended, and even though running back Adrian Peterson looked good, there was no guarantee he wasn’t going to hit the wall. I was intrigued a few days later when the Vikes traded for quarterback Sam Bradford, the first overall draft pick back in 2010 who’s been plagued by injuries since coming into the league, but I still wouldn’t have expected anything special. Then it started to happen.
Week one, the Vikes faced the Tennessee Titans. The Titans are not a very good team, and Vikings backup quarterback Shaun Hill stood tall under center and did his job. The Vikings won this one on the road on the strength of their defense.
Week two the Vikings played the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night. This was the first game played in Minnesota’s brand new stadium, so they wanted the win. Green Bay liked their odds coming into this game: they have a very good offense, and were going up against a quarterback who had only been with the team for two weeks. The Viking’s odds looked even bleaker as Adrian Peterson walked off the field with a knee injury during the first half of the game, but the defense held up. Sam Bradford went out on the field in this game and did just enough to get his team the win.
The next two weeks, the Vikings played a pair of amazing quarterbacks when they visited Carolina and played the New York Giants at home. The Vikings defense made two amazing quarterbacks (Cam Newton and Eli Manning) looks like mediocre rookies, while their offense got better and better each time they got on the field. Through three starts, Sam Bradford played well enough to get his team three victories.
Canadian Thanksgiving Sunday, the Vikings were once again in action, with the Houston Texans coming to visit. After facing three all-star quarterbacks in a row, the Vikings defense was up against Brock Osweiler, who is not nearly an all-star. The Vikings rolled over the Texans to become the only undefeated team in the league.
One of the biggest questions in the NFL right now is, who can stop the Vikings? 16-0 is still a long way away, but judging by their remaining schedule it’s becoming more and more likely.
Outside of their division, the Vikings play in Philadelphia, in Washington, at home against the Cardinals and the Cowboys, and then visit the Jaguars. Unless Redskins Kirk Cousins can put together his best game ever, the only game that I see the Vikings losing is against Philadelphia and their rookie quarterback Carson Wentz.
The Vikes have five division games left, two apiece against the Bears and the Lions which shouldn’t be a problem, and one in Green Bay. The Bears and Lions have little to no chance of breaking through against the Vikings, so the only game here that the Vikings could lose is in Green Bay. Lambeau Field is a tough stadium to visit in late November, and the Packers are a good team. I see this being the most intense game of the Vikings season, and the Packers will be fighting for a playoff spot at this point in the season.
If the Vikings keep playing the way they have been, they’re going to the playoffs and they’re going to make some noise when they get there.