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Wednesday (Are the Vikings legitimate playoff contenders?) edition: Wha' Happened?

Posted by: Michael Rand under Vikings Updated: October 10, 2012 - 8:42 AM

 

We spent the last two days packing for a move, closing on a house and moving into a house, which 1) explains our two-day absence and 2) allowed us plenty of time to think about whether these 4-1 Vikings (yes, we did allow ourselves a certain three-hour window Sunday to watch football) are for real.

 

After many solitary hours of putting things in bins and boxes, taking things out of bins and boxes, wondering how Percy Harvin bounces off tacklers like that and legitimately wondering just who this team is, we have arrived at this conclusion: We're not sure yet.

Even those of us who wildly predicted a strong year for the Vikings -- even had them at 4-1 at this point in the season -- could not have envisioned how this team would win its past three games: with defensive grit and offensive efficiency against San Francisco, with timely playmaking against Detroit and with an all-around swarm against the lowly Titans. This team displayed a playoff-friendly formula in those past three games.

Still, we're not ready to announce the turnaround is permanent. Even though the Vikings have defeated two 2011 playoff teams, the Lions are a mess. The 49ers victory was a signature win -- impressive by any standards -- but there will be plenty more tests in a much more daunting second half of the schedule.

However, we wouldn't say the schedule is the biggest thing holding us back. The biggest thing is fear. We've seen fast-starting Vikings teams that turned to dust (hello, 2003). We've seen fast starting Vikings teams that fell apart at the worst possible time (hello, 1998 and 2009).

This team feels entirely different. If fear is the biggest thing standing between belief and skepticism, then 2012 has already been a wild success.

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Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Marshall 52 FINAL
Northern Ill 23
Navy 17 FINAL
San Diego St 16
Central Mich 48 FINAL
Western Ky 49
Fresno State 6 FINAL
Rice 30
Illinois 12/26/14 12:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Rutgers 12/26/14 3:30 PM
North Carolina
NC State 12/26/14 7:00 PM
UCF
Cincinnati 12/27/14 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Duke 12/27/14 1:10 PM
(15) Arizona State
Miami-Florida 12/27/14 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 12/27/14 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 12/27/14 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

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