The Vikings played their final regular-season game at TCF Bank Stadium on Sunday night. The two-year relationship with the University of Minnesota whizzed by for coach Mike Zimmer.
"I want to give a little shout-out to the University of Minnesota," Zimmer said earlier this week. "I know this could be our last home game there, but they've done a great job for these two years — it's gone by fast actually. Our fans have been great. Hopefully they'll be great again Sunday night and go out the right way outdoors, so it'll be fun."
The Vikings will move into the $1.1 billion U.S. Bank Stadium in downtown Minneapolis next season.
The Metrodome, the Vikings' home from 1982-2013, was knocked down to make room for the new stadium, and the Vikings moved to TCF Bank Stadium for the 2014 and 2015 seasons.
Despite the shift, the Vikings entered Sunday having compiled a 10-5 home record over 2014 and 2015 and are 5-2 at home this season. During the two-year stint at TCF Bank Stadium, the Vikings are 16-14 overall and are one of only two teams in NFL history to have a winning season while playing at a temporary home. If they are able to secure a playoff spot, they'll become the only team in NFL history to advance to the postseason while displaced from its home. In 2001, Seattle went 9-7 while playing at the University of Washington but missed the playoffs.
TCF Bank Stadium is the only home Zimmer has ever known. He was hired in January 2014, and the demolition on the Metrodome began that month.
Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has played both of his seasons outdoors.
"The University of Minnesota has been great. Great hospitality, the fans have been awesome," Bridgewater said. "The support has been fun playing outside, and we try to use it to our advantage."
2016 opponents are nearly settled
Sunday night's meeting was the 11th between the teams since the NFC Championship Game at the end of the 2000 season, a game won 41-0 by the home-standing Giants.
Five of those meetings were under the every-three-year cycle in which the NFC North plays the NFC East. The other six games came when the teams finished in similar spots in their divisions.
And the teams will meet again next season.
The Vikings' 2016 schedule will include games against the NFC East and AFC South. They will also have games against the teams that finish in the same spot in their divisions in the NFC West and NFC South.
The dates of the games will be released in April, but here are the opponents:
Home: Dallas, N.Y. Giants, Houston, Indianapolis, Green Bay, Detroit, Chicago, NFC West team that finishes in the same position (Arizona or Seattle) that the Vikings finish in in the NFC North.
Away: Philadelphia, Washington, Jacksonville, Tennessee, Green Bay, Detroit, Chicago, NFC South team that finishes in the same position (Carolina or Atlanta).
Baby, it's cold outside
Sunday night's game-time temperature was 13 degrees with a windchill of 2 degrees.
The chilly night was the eighth-coldest home game in Vikings history. The coldest was minus-2 on Dec. 3, 1972, against Chicago.
Adrian Peterson is in a two-man battle for the NFL rushing title with Tampa Bay's Doug Martin. Martin had 49 yards in Sunday's loss to Chicago, giving him 1,354 for the season.
Peterson entered Sunday night's game with 1,314 yards. St. Louis rookie Todd Gurley is third with 1,108.
Peterson has two rushing titles, in 2008 and in 2012, when he had a career high 2,097.
Peterson bought snowmobiles for the offensive line after his 2012 title and earlier this week said he's starting to ponder what this year's gift might be.
Bridgewater was playing for a career-best third consecutive 100-plus passer rating on Sunday.
He was 25-for-36 for 335 yards and one touchdown for a 108 passer rating in the 23-20 loss to Arizona and then 17-for-20 for 231 yards and four touchdowns for a 154.4 passer rating in last Sunday's 38-17 victory over Chicago.
It was the second time in Bridgewater's career he's put together back-to-back 100-plus passer ratings.
Linebacker Anthony Barr, safety Harrison Smith and nose tackle Linval Joseph returned to the lineup Sunday against the Giants. Barr returned from a groin injury he aggravated in the loss to the Seahawks three weeks ago. Smith has missed three of the past four games with a knee and hamstring injury. Joseph sat out the past three games because of a toe injury.
The Vikings scratched quarterback Taylor Heinicke, wide receiver Charles Johnson, cornerback Josh Robinson, outside linebacker Brandon Watts, defensive end Zach Moore and offensive linemen Nick Easton and Jeremiah Sirles.
Staff writers Chris Miller and Matt Vensel contributed to this report