MN Vikings Go 8-9 In Way Too Early Schedule Prediction

Vikings

This will be the first installment of my Vikings schedule predictions throughout the summer. As of right now, I have Minnesota going 8-9 in the regular season.

Preface

It’s June! Why would we do a deep dive into football season already? Since the TImberwolves imploded in Game 5, I’ve already started to look ahead. Plus, the Justin Jefferson news got me all griddy… (ha… get it?) I wish I were intrigued by the Twins… but they have about five months of baseball to play. My millennial self can’t wait that long. I need to do exercises like this. For this exercise, let’s have Sam Darnold start the first part of the schedule and JJ finish the last few games (sadly I don’t think the Vikes will have much to play for at the end).

Vikings Schedule – Week 1 – Sept. 8, @ New York Giants, Noon

Previous matchup: The Giants defeated the Vikings in the first round of the playoffs in 2023, 31-24.

Prediction:

Darnold will be pressured all afternoon here. On paper, the Vikings SHOULD win this, but when do they do what they should do? It’s close, but they fall. Vikings 24, Giants 26

Vikings record: 0-1

Week 2 – Sept. 15, Home vs. SF 49ers, Noon

Previous matchup: The Vikings defeated the 49ers last year in an impressive Monday Night Football battle. Kirk Cousins lit the Niners up for 378 yards and two touchdowns. One of the highlight plays came from rookie wide receiver Jordan Addison. He ripped the ball away from 49ers defender Charvarius Ward scoring a touchdown right before halftime.

Prediction: Shocker here. Darnold lights these San Fran boys up on a revenge tour! Vikes can play the Niners well if they’re at US Bank. Minnesota 20, San Francisco 17

Vikings record: 1-1

Vikings Schedule – Week 3 – Sept. 22, Home vs. Houston Texans, Noon

Previous matchup: The Minnesota Vikings defeated the Houston Texans 31-23 on October 4, 2020, in week four of the season. Dalvin Cook ran for two touchdowns and 130 yards to lead the Purple.

Prediction: This game will be a fun reunion with Stefon Diggs. The CJ Stroud-led Texans will be a tough out. Vikings are not ready for that kind of firepower. Vikings 17, Texans 34

Vikings Record: 1-2

Week 4 – Sept. 29, @ Green Bay Packers, Noon

Previous matchup: Green Bay took advantage of a Kirk Cousins-less Vikings squad in week 16 last year, 33-10. The Pack were led by Jordan Love, who threw for 256 yards and three touchdowns. However, before that beatdown, the Vikings defeated Green Bay 24-10; that ended up being Cousins’ last game as a Viking since he tore his ACL midway through the third quarter.

Prediction: Ugh. I hate to jump on the Packers bandwagon, but it looks like they did it again. They found another quarterbacking successor. Love showed that he could lead a young team and they will get better with increased reps. In Lambeau… at least there won’t be snow. It will be close for a bit, but Pakcers pull away late. Minnesota, 16, Green Bay 31

Vikings Record: 1-3

Vikings Schedule – Week 5 – Oct. 6, Home (in London) vs. NY Jets, 8:30 am

Previous matchup: The Vikings defeated the Jets in 2022, 27-22, to improve to a league-best 10-2. Mike White put up an impressive 369 passing yards and rookie receiver, Garrett Wilson, posted eight catches for 162 yards. Cousins struggled, but in the end, got the win. He threw for a season-low 173 yards vs. the daunting Jets defense.

Prediction: This wraps up a brutal start to the Vikings’ schedule in 2024. This game will face a similar foe: Aaron Rodgers. Let’s see if the 40-year-old can make it this far in the season. Either way, the Vikes bounce back and regain some pride here. Vikings 26, Jets 21

Vikings Record: 2-3

Week 6 – BYE WEEK

Vikings Schedule – Week 7 – Oct. 20th, Home vs. Detroit Lions, Noon

Previous matchup: The Lions took care of the depleted Vikings earlier this year, 30-20. Goff was masterful with 320 yards and two touchdowns. Vikings’ third-string quarterback, Nick Mullens, lit up the box score by throwing for an impressive 396 yards and two touchdowns.

Prediction: I think the Vikes come out of the bye with a flurry of new tricks for the Lions. The Vikes shock the little kitties and get closer to crawling back to .500. Vikings 28, Lions 27

Vikings Record: 3-3

Week 8 – Oct. 24th, @ LA Rams, 7:15 pm

Previous matchup: The Vikings and Rams last played in a high-scoring Monday Night Football matchup in 2018. The Rams prevailed 38-31. Cousins threw for 422 yards and three touchdowns. Jared Goff was even more impressive by throwing 465 yards and five touchdowns.

Prediction: Short week for the Vikings here. No more Aaron Darnold, though. I think Matthew Stafford, Puka Nacua, and Cooper Kupp feast on the Vikings’ lack of experience on the defensive side. Minnesota 23, Los Angeles 31

Vikings Record: 3-4

Vikings Schedule – Week 9 – Nov. 3rd, Home vs. Indianapolis Colts, Noon

Previous matchup: Who could forget this? The last time these two teams played each other… history. The Vikings defeated Indianapolis 39-36 after being down 33-0 in the third quarter.

Prediction: Anthony Richardson was impressive for the Colts last year before going down with a season-ending injury. With a healthy Richardson, they are too much for the Vikes. This one is close throughout, but Jonathan Taylor will help run the clock out. Vikings 16, Colts 21

Vikings Record: 3-5

Week 10 – Nov. 10th, @ Jacksonville Jaguars, Noon

Previous matchup: The Vikings last played the Jaguars in 2020 and came away with a 27-24 overtime victory. Dan Bailey kicked a 23-yard field goal with 1:49 left in overtime after he missed two extra points and a 51-yard field goal with 13 seconds remaining in regulation. Kirk Cousins threw for 305 yards, Dalvin Cook contributed 120 yards on 32 carriers and rookie Justin Jefferson had nine catches for 121 yards and a touchdown. Before The Jags drafted Trevor Lawrence, they started journeyman quarterback, Mike Glennon.

Prediction: The Vikings will drop a third consecutive game here to Lawrence and an underrated swarming defense. Fans will be calling for McCarthy after Darnold struggles on the road. Minnesota 13, Jacksonville 24

Vikings Record: 3-6

Vikings Schedule – Week 11 – Nov. 17th, @ Tennessee Titans, Noon

Previous matchup: The last time the Tennessee Titans and Minnesota Vikings played against each other was on September 27, 2020, with the Titans winning 31-30. Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 55-yard field goal with 1:48 left in the game.

Prediction: The Vikings get back on track here. They dominate Tennessee and second-year quarterback Will Levis. Vikings 28, Titans 14

Vikings Record: 4-6

Week 12 – Nov. 24th, @ Chicago Bears, Noon

Previous matchup: The Bears defeated the Vikings 12-10 last year. Ugh… it was a snooze-fest if I ever saw one (well… that 3-0 victory over the Raiders was pretty unwatchable).

Prediction: Oh boy… this could be a rough one. I hate to admit it… but da Bears are going to be a dangerous team. Divisional games are always close, and this will not be an exception. Minnesota 17, Chicago 20

Vikings Record: 4-7

Vikings Schedule – Week 13 – Dec. 1, Home vs. Arizona Cardinals, Noon

Previous matchup: These two teams last met on October 30th, during the 2022 regular season. Minnesota prevailed with a 34-26 win. The Vikings were propelled to the victory with three rushing touchdowns from Dalvin Cook, Alexander Mattison, and Kirk… yes… Kirk Cousins.

Prediction: Enter JJ McCarthy. The new era of Vikings football begins with a bang! In my opinion, this would be the most ideal spot for him to start. It is the beginning of a three-game homestand. I have no idea how this Michigan product will produce, but I’m optimistic with the weapons he has at his disposal. Vikings 24, Cardinals 21

Vikings Record: 5-7

Week 14 – Dec. 8th, Home vs. Atlanta Falcons, Noon

Previous matchup: The Vikings defeated the Falcons last year 31-28. This was the introduction of Josh Dobbs. He lit up Atlants with 158 passing yards, two touchdowns, 66 yards on the ground, and an additional rushing touchdown. Vikings’ fans believed they found something after Dobbs didn’t even know the names of his players in the locker room.

Prediction: Here we go. The game every Vikings fan will be anticipating the most. Enter Kirk Cousins. Screw this. McCarthy shows off the legs and leads the Vikings to a blowout victory. We ALL would LIKE THAT! Minnesota 38, Atlanta 21

Vikings Record: 6-7

Vikings Schedule – Week 15 – Dec. 16th (SNF), Home vs. Chicago Bears, 7:00 pm

Prediction: Three-in-a-row! Vikes win a close one here. Minnesota may finish last in the division, but it doesn’t mean they could squeak out a few wins. Minnesota is a difficult matchup for opposing teams; crowd noise is a problem. Vikings 24, Bears 23

Vikings Record: 7-7

Week 16 – Dec. 22, @ Seattle Seahawks, 3:05 pm pm

Previous matchup: The Vikings defeated the Seahawks 30-17 in 2021 at US Bank Stadium. Cousins was flawless, going 30 for 38 for 323 yards and three touchdowns. Jefferson had 119 yards and a touchdown.

Prediction: Seattle is a tough place to play. The Seahawks’ receivers will have a field day with the Vikings’ inexperienced secondary. That 12th man will rattle McCarthy and the Vikings. It will be chalked up to a “solid learning experience for the young man…” Minnesota 13, Seattle 28

Vikings Record: 7-8

Vikings Schedule – Week 17, Home vs. Green Bay Packers, Noon

Prediction: Green Bay will be in the hunt for playoff seeding. Jordan Love and the young Packers come into Minnesota and steal the game in the 4th quarter. Vikings 31, Packers 34

Vikings Record: 7-9

Week 18, @ Detroit Lions, TBD

Prediction: Detroit is going to go on a run this year and I truly believe they will wrap up a top seed in the NFC and sit their starters. The Vikings will get a pointless win to end the season just below .500. Vikings 27, Lions 14

Final Record: 8-9

Mock Schedule #2 will drop in July. My final schedule predictions will come in late August. There will be changes.

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