Oakland - 

Let's ask the weekly question:

Just how good are the Vikings?

They've won five straight. Only the Panthers, Patriots and Bengals have better records than the Vikings' 7-2.

The Panthers are much in the same mold as the Vikings, only with a more athletic, more-experienced quarterback and a more mature defense.

The Patriots are exceptional but have lost Dion Lewis and Julian Edelman.

The Bengals have been dominant against a fairly easy schedule.

I thought the Vikings had a chance to go on a five-game winning streak after they lost to the Broncos. What's interesting is that the tough stretch that follows the Oakland game might not be as daunting as it appeared to be a month or two ago.

The Packers have lost three straight. Atlanta has high-grade offensive talent but doesn't scare anyone as an overall team. The Seahawks have fallen. That may leave two games that will let the Vikings know where they stand - Dec. 10 at Arizona and Jan. 3 at Green Bay.

I picked the Vikings to go 10-6 before the season started. I hedged toward 11-5 if everything went right.

If I had to revise my pick, I'd probably go with 11-5. Which will be enough to get them into the playoffs in a league where there appear to be no great, healthy, teams.


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Souhan postgame: Vikings grind out another

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Souhan blog: Where do the Vikings fit in the NFL's top 10?