I returned home from a family vacation last weekend to find my Athlon Sports preview magazine waiting on me. Like every preview magazine, Athlon makes its 2010 predictions and they certainly like the Vikings potential this season.

Athlon picked the Vikings to win the NFC Championship and advance to the Super Bowl. They predict the Vikings to lose to the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl.

(Full disclosure here: I am an annual contributor to this preview magazine but Athlon's staff makes their predictions.)

Here is how Athlon predicted the NFC playoff seeds: 1. Vikings, 2. Saints, 3. Cowboys, 4. 49ers, 5. Packers, 6. Falcons.

The magazine picked the Vikings to beat the Packers in the divisional round and the Cowboys in the NFC title game.

On the AFC side, they have the Ravens defeating the Jets in the title game.

Preseason rankings and predictions mean very little of course. But it gives us something to talk about during the slooooow part of the NFL calendar.

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Vikings offensive line ranked 11th

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Brinkley preparing to start