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Mid-day talker: The Vikings and the race to the bottom in the NFL

Posted by: Michael Rand under Vikings Updated: November 13, 2013 - 1:02 PM

In very Vikings fashion, the purple finally won a game last week ... right when a lot of fans wanted them to keep losing. As we've noted many times in the past, we do not like tanking when it comes to trying to secure draft position. But 2013 has the potential to be eerily similar to 2011 when it comes the draft and the race to the bottom in the NFL. Here is a look at how that race breaks down as of now:

The Bills, Steelers, Raiders, Giants and Redskins all have three wins, but for now we're going to focus on the five teams below them:

The Vikings, Falcons and Texans are 2-7.

The Jaguars and Bucs are 1-8.

And yes, that means the Jaguars and Bucs -- previously winless -- both won last week, and the Vikings would have been tied at the bottom if not for the win over Washington (remind you at all of 2011?).

Some interesting notes about those five teams:

The Texans and Jaguars play each other twice in the final seven games, so somebody is going to pick up wins (unless, of course, they tie ... but even then, they're gaining on the field). Both teams also have fairly winnable games outside of those head-to-head matchups. The Jaguars play the Cardinals, Browns, Bills and Titans before finishing with a tough one against the Colts. The Texans, who have lost four games by three or fewer points and were a playoff team last season, still get the Raiders and Titans in addition to the two against the Jaguars.

The Bucs and Falcons, meanwhile, play each other this week -- so again, one of those teams will almost certainly pick up a win (and move further away in the race to the bottom). The Bucs also play the Rams and Bills; otherwise, their schedule is very tough. The Falcons, like the Texans and Vikings a playoff team a year ago, have Buffalo and Washington left but otherwise face a tough slate.

The Vikings, of course, are at Seattle this weekend. The final six are: at Green Bay, home against Chicago, at Baltimore, home against Philly, at Cincy and home against Detroit. The Vikings will lose at Seattle. We could honestly imagine the Vikings having a chance in most of those final six games, especially if Aaron Rodgers misses the game in Green Bay. That said, we could easily see the Vikings losing all six.

Let's say they win twice more this season and finish 4-12. Where would that leave them? Well, our best guess is that the Texans will win at least four, and probably more. The Jaguars honestly could, too, based on their schedule -- but we wouldn't bet on it. If the Falcons beat Tampa Bay this week, we imagine they will reach four or more. If Tampa Bay wins, all bets are off.

Bottom line: It's not out of the question for the Vikings to wind up last in the NFL and get the No. 1 pick. But we'll say as of now their toughest competition is Tampa Bay, not Jacksonville. And we wouldn't be at all surprised to see them wind up third or fourth, just like 2011.

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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
Washington 102 FINAL
New York 91
Oklahoma City 114 FINAL
San Antonio 106
Cleveland 91 FINAL
Miami 101
LA Lakers 66 3rd Qtr 6:06
Chicago 70
Golden State 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
DePaul 69 FINAL
Loyola Marymount 72
Ohio 58 FINAL
Nebraska 71
Colorado 66 FINAL
Hawaii 69
George Washington 28 1st Half 1:22
Wichita State 28
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
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
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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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