The Minnesota Vikings will learn a lot about themselves during their slate of preseason games against the Buffalo Bills, Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers and the Miami Dolphins.

The 2017 preseason schedule, released Monday, will offer the first chance to see the newly acquired free agents and the draft picks in action.

It’s also the dawn of the post-Adrian Peterson era. Maybe by this time, he’ll be off the market and in another team’s jersey, which will be a strange sight indeed.

The 2017 NFL regular season schedule is expected to be released some time next week.

But this Vikings’ preseason will be more about who they have and less about who they don’t. Tackles Mike Remmers and Riley Reiff will be counted on to vastly upgrade the run game. That run game will be led by Latavius Murray, who is currently recovering from offseason ankle surgery. There’s even a new punter (Ryan Quigley) and a new backup quarterback (Case Keenum) to get a look at.

But there is a big picture, too: Has this team improved from the one that started 5-0 a year ago before going off the rails and finishing 8-8 and out of the playoffs? Can the Vikings be contenders, and at least threaten to become the first team to play a Super Bowl in their own stadium?

Super Bowl LII is February 4 at U.S. Bank Stadium. Newly-retired Viking Chad Greenway is one of the Twin Cities’ leading ambassadors for the game. What if he played host to his old team?

Ah, that’s getting too far ahead. For now, it’s all about the preseason schedule. Specific dates for Weeks 1 and 2 will be announced at a later date.

2017 MINNESOTA VIKINGS PRESEASON SCHEDULE

Preseason Week 1 (Aug. 10-13): at Buffalo Bills

Preseason Week 2 (Aug. 18-20): at Seattle Seahawks

Preseason Week 3 (Aug. 27): vs. San Francisco 49ers

Preseason Week 4 (Aug. 31): vs. Miami Dolphins

HOW CAN I WATCH?

With the exception of Week 3 against the 49ers, all of the Vikings’ preseason games will be televised on Fox 9, and can be heard on KFAN-FM 100.3, KTLK-AM 1130 and the Vikings radio network.

The Week 3 game at U.S. Bank Stadium against the 49ers will be shown on NBC on Sunday Night Football.