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ESPN Grades The Minnesota Vikings' Offseason

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Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

We're still just a little more than eleven weeks away from the Hall of Fame Game between the Minnesota Vikings and Pittsburgh Steelers that will kick off the 2015 NFL pre-season on 9 August. That means that, per NFL rules, the Vikings could start Training Camp as early as 25 July, as that's 15 days before their first pre-season game. (The Vikings and the Steelers will get a bit of a head start on everybody else because of the Hall of Fame Game.)

There probably isn't going to be a whole lot in terms of roster movement between now and then, so the folks behind the mighty E$PN In$ider paywall have graded the offseasons of all 32 NFL teams. They seem to like what the Vikings have done, as they've given the purple and gold a B-plus for what they've done since last season ended. That mark was only bettered by three teams across the league.

Here's what the four-letter had to say about the Vikings' offseason. The analysis is done by Mike Sando, with help from ESPN contributors Bill Polian, Louis Riddick, Bill Williamson, and Field Yates.

Getting Adrian Peterson back and resisting pressure to trade him -- at least so far -- helped explain why the Vikings came within a tick of getting into the A range.

"Peterson is a force multiplier," Polian said. "Now Teddy Bridgewater has a guy he can hand it to 20 times a game. That changes everything. Tight end is a strength. I don't know if the wide receiver corps is quite enough to get them as far as they'd like to go. I want to see how that position adds up."

All the analysts saw the Vikings as a team with a solid plan in place. Polian called them steady and a team doing things the right way. Williamson said it was clear the Vikings know exactly what types of players they wanted. Riddick agreed with Polian about questions persisting at receiver, but he was less concerned.

"I like Mike Wallace paired with Charles Johnson," Riddick said. "If Wallace can hook up with Bridgewater, unlike he could with Ryan Tannehill, then they have something there. Throw in Jarius Wright and maybe Cordarrelle Patterson can take another step. Defensively, Kendricks will solidify them in the middle. Hunter could catch people by surprise; he was one of the best athletes in the draft. He has to develop instincts and Mike Zimmer can help him do that."

I'm not sure if I'm ready to live in a world where places like ESPN actually have nice things to say about the Minnesota Vikings. I'm sure they'll go back to dumping on them when the proverbial bullets start flying, as is their wont, but for now it's a nice change of pace.