Ben Goessling: Whether it’s the two sets of back-to-back games on opposite coasts, three games against playoff teams in the first five weeks or likely seeing a healthy Aaron Rodgers in Week 2, the Vikings have to navigate a tricky schedule. Their playoff fate could be written through road games against such teams as the Packers, Rams, Eagles, Patriots and Seahawks.
Andrew Krammer: Kirk Cousins referenced the “all-time greats who are playing right now,” and how revolving doors along their offensive lines didn’t cause a drop-off in their play. Now that the $84 million quarterback is paid like one of the greats, he needs to play like it regardless of the circumstances.
Sid Hartman: There’s no doubt the Vikings should be good this year, but just how good comes down to four key road games to decide if they are Super Bowl contenders. Three of them are in the first five weeks: at Green Bay in Week 2, at the Los Angeles Rams in Week 4, at Philadelphia in Week 5 and at New England in Week 13. Those games will determine just how good they really are.
Mark Craig: There’s a new quarterback, but the pressure point is an old one: offensive line. Like last year, the season sinks or succeeds on the backs of the O-line. So far, so not-so-good considering the Vikings were still down to their third-string center when they traded for another one two weeks before the opener.