For the first time this season, the Minnesota Vikings put together consecutive victories, following their Monday Night Football victory over the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field with a win at home over the Green Bay Packers. The victory has pundits around the National Football League moving the purple up the charts in their Power Rankings for this week.
But, how far up are they going? Well, that’s what we’re here to find out, as it’s time for this week’s Roundup.
Walter Cherepinsky, Walter Football: #13 (Last week: #17)
With Aaron Rodgers out, and Matthew Stafford banged up, the Vikings are now the favorites to win the NFC North. Even better is that Teddy Bridgewater is expected back soon. We'll have to see if Bridgewater is his old self again, but if he is, the sky is the limit for this Minnesota squad.
Chris Simms, Bleacher Report: #8 (Last week: #12)
The NFC North landscape has changed now that Aaron Rodgers is likely out for the season with a broken collarbone. Minnesota is the team that can come out on top, and having a head-to-head win over the Packers also helps.
Minnesota controlled almost every aspect of the game against Green Bay, and the final score made it seem closer than it was. Case Keenum threw an interception that led to points for the Packers, as did a Jerick McKinnon fumble.
The Vikings are still finding their way on offense. There's no Sam Bradford and no Dalvin Cook. There was no Stefon Diggs in Week 6, and Minnesota desperately needs to get him back. He opens up the offense and makes things easier on other receivers and backs.
Of course, the Vikings don't need a whole lot from their offense to win games. They just need a few big plays each game because the defense is capable of putting the team in position to win by itself.
Elliot Harrison, NFL.com: #9 (Last week: #17)
Moving the Vikes way up, with Teddy Bridgewater cleared to practice and Jerick McKinnon performing admirably in place of Dalvin Cook. Despite their fine record, going to be a hair conservative and not move them up any higher, not one week after they narrowly escaped Chicago (barely beating a rookie QB making his NFL debut). Minnesota also got out of facing Aaron Rodgers for three quarters on Sunday. That said, I wish I hadn't been conservative when it came to whether or not to have Harrison Smith on my preseason All-Pro team. He was on there until the final cutdown. Now I think Mike Zimmer's big-time safety is a candidate for DPOY. Already at the zenith of Pro Football Focus' rankings, all Smith did was compile five tackles, 1.5 sacks and an interception. We don't hear about him enough.
Associated Press: #6 (Last week: #12)
No Vikings-centric commentary from the Associated Press this week
SB Nation: #7 (Last week: #22)
No Vikings-centric commentary from SB Nation, and I realize that the ratings make less sense than the Chewbacca Defense
ESPN: #13 (Last week: #20)
Aaron Rodgers is down, the Lions are struggling and the Bears are starting a rookie quarterback. At this point, it appears the NFC North is the Vikings' to lose. They'll face the AFC North, though, with the struggling Ravens and Browns over the next few weeks.
USA Today: #14 (Last week: #16)
Last year's first rounder, WR Laquon Treadwell, had three receptions for 51 yards Sunday. He caught one ball for 15 yards in 2016.
Frank Schwab, Yahoo! Sports: #12 (Last week: #17)
This team stands to gain the most from Aaron Rodgers’ injury. The Vikings got a key win Sunday against Brett Hundley coming in off the bench, so they’ve already benefited. If the Vikings don’t take advantage of this and win the NFC North, it’ll be a big disappointment.
MMQB, Sports Illustrated: #9 (Last week: #13)
No Vikings-centric commentary from MMQB this week
Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk: #7 (Last week: #15)
Case Keenum quietly is becoming a keeper for the Vikings.
Pete Prisco, CBS Sports: #8 (Last week: #16)
At 4-2, they lead the NFC North despite playing most of the season without Sam Bradford. Kudos to Mike Zimmer for where this team is now.
Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News: #7 (Last week: #15)
Their fortunes are quickly changing in the NFC North, as Case Keenum has been a solid fill-in QB for Sam Bradford, and it looks like Teddy Bridgewater might be an option soon. They are a strong favorite in the division after beating Green Bay and knocking out Aaron Rodgers.
This week: vs. Ravens, when there will be a whole lot of purple going on
Well, there’s a little bit of a spread within these Power Rankings this week. Of the 12 places we gather our rankings from, eight of them have placed the Vikings within their top ten. Nobody has them ranked lower than #14 this week, and in many cases the jump from last week has been pretty significant. Four different outlets jumped the Vikings a full eight spots in their rankings this week.
So, with rises in consecutive weeks for the first time this year, here’s a look at the embiggenable graphic depiction.
That’s your Power Rankings Roundup for this week, ladies and gentlemen. We’ll be back with, hopefully, a third consecutive Roundup that shows the Vikings rising after this week’s clash with the Baltimore Ravens.