The schedules for all NFL teams have been unveiled. Even though we’re in the middle of the NBA playoffs, lets take a quick break from basketball and have a quick look at the 2018 schedule for the Minnesota Vikings.
So, despite the rumors, the Vikings will not open the season against the defending Super Bowl Champion Eagles but instead play at home against the 49ers. The Vikings have four primetime games this season, a Thursday game at Los Angeles (Rams), two Sunday night games against the Saints and Packers, and a Monday night game at the Seahawks. Four primetime games show that expectations for this year’s Vikings are high, even from a national perspective.
The Vikings take on five playoff teams from last season (the Bills, Rams, Eagles, Saints, and Patriots), but several other teams on the schedule could prove to be a tough test. The Packers have Aaron Rodgers back from injury, so you can expect a bounceback season from them. The 49ers started last season 0-10, but after making the move for Jimmy Garoopolo and inserting him into the starting lineup they went 5-0 to end the season. The Lions narrowly missed the playoffs last season, and now they have a new coaching staff. And then there is the Seahawks, who look like they are starting to rebuild, but do not underestimate Russell Wilson.
From a home-road perspective, the Vikings definitely face harder teams on the road. In back to back weeks, they play in Los Angeles and in Philadelphia, a brutual stetch. Their non-division home schedule consists of the 49ers, Bills, Cardinals, Saints, and Dolphins. It would have been nice if one (or a couple) of the tough road games against the Rams, Eagles, or Patriots was a home matchup. On the plus side, the Vikings never have more than two straight games on the road. In other good news, the Vikings also have a week 10 bye. After nine straight weeks of games, the week 10 bye will be a nice opprotunity for banged up players to rest and get healthy.
Overall, the Vikings’ schedule is looking tough, but this is a good team we’re talking about. None of these games look like automatic losses to me, at least not as it sits now in April. My way too early prediction for the Vikings’ record is 12-4.