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Minnesota Vikings Power Rankings Roundup: Week 15

A loss for the Vikings gets the expected result

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NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

We’re getting to our Power Rankings Roundup for this week a little later than usual, courtesy of yours truly having some school projects to finish off earlier on. But those are taken care of now, and we can take a look at where our Minnesota Vikings sit in the eyes of the pundits across these vast interwebs of ours.

As we know, the Vikings lost to Tampa Bay last Sunday to drop their record to 6-7 and back out of the NFC playoff race. How far is that going to drop them according to the experts? Let’s get the Roundup started and find out.

Associated Press: #17 (Last week: #16)

No commentary from the AP, as usual

The Athletic: #15 (Last week: #15)

They got wide receiver Justin Jefferson with the 22nd overall pick and cornerback Jeff Gladney at No. 31. Jefferson has been a home run, delivering one of the best rookie seasons for a wide receiver in NFL history. Through 13 games, he has 65 catches for 1,078 yards and seven touchdowns. Gladney, meanwhile, has improved, and looks like he’ll at least be a competent starting corner. That’s the good news. The bad news is the Vikings made too many mistakes in their loss to Tampa, they were a disaster on special teams. Minnesota is now one game out of the final wild-card spot in the NFC.

Bleacher Report: #20 (Last week: #19)

The Minnesota Vikings came into Week 14 as a playoff team. They did not leave it that way.

After starting the season 1-5, the Vikings peeled off five wins in six games to turn their season around. But most of those wins came against teams that entered Week 14 with sub-.500 records. In fact, the Vikings have only one win all season long against a team with more wins than losses.

Minnesota is still sitting on one win against a “good” team following its 26-14 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.

The Vikings outgained the Buccaneers 335-303. But whether it was miscues, penalties or an abysmal day for kicker Dan Bailey, they couldn’t take full advantage of the opportunities they were afforded.

“Sunday’s game was a reminder to all who had forgotten that the Vikings are more pretender than contender,” Davenport said. “Yes, Minnesota has plenty of offensive firepower with Dalvin Cook, Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson. But the offensive line isn’t good, and the defense is worse. With a trip to New Orleans still left on the schedule, winning out isn’t likely for the Vikings. Neither is the playoffs.”

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports: #19 (Last week: #18)

So much for the idea they will make the playoffs. They are done. The defense needs a lot of help.

ESPN: #16 (Last week: #17)

Given how the Vikings’ defense started the season, with multiple injuries and a number of rookies called on early, its current FPI ranking is remarkable. The offense has been moving the ball efficiently behind Dalvin Cook and a plethora of receiving options, but special-teams issues have snowballed into a full-blown crisis. The Vikings lost to the Bucs on Sunday in large part because of Dan Bailey’s four missed kicks that left 10 points on the table. Minnesota can’t afford for its kicking issues to continue after its playoff chances took a massive hit against Tampa Bay. Another mistake-laden loss would likely derail the Vikings’ playoff hopes.

MMQB, Sports Illustrated: #16 (Last week: #19)

The Vikings had surged back into the playoff picture by winning five of their previous six games, but the loss in Tampa Bay set them back in their quest to salvage their season. Dan Bailey’s three missed field goals and one errant extra point cost them 10 points.

Dan Hanzus, #17 (Last week: #16)

The Curse Of The Viking Kicker is more powerful than any man who tries to break it. The latest victim was Dan Bailey, who missed all four of his attempts (one PAT, three field goals) in a damaging 26-14 loss to the Buccaneers. Bailey’s meltdown was just one element of a deeply frustrating game for Minnesota, which dominated on the ground in the first quarter but was undone by ill-timed penalties and the aforementioned special teams collapse. The Vikes outgained the Bucs in total yardage and held the ball for nearly 40 minutes of game time, yet now find themselves on the outside looking in with three weeks to go in the NFC wild-card race.

Matt Williamson, Pro Football Network: #15 (Last week: #14)

Minnesota controlled this game early on against the Buccaneers, but that quickly faded. The Vikings had serious kicker problems, and Dan Bailey could be looking for a job soon. Minnesota held the football for over 39 minutes and sacked Tom Brady six times.

Dalvin Cook rushed for over 100 yards, and Kirk Cousins played well enough to win. But this wasn’t Minnesota’s day, and they are now 6-7.

Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk: #15 (Last week: #14)

And now they’ll beat the Bears and then the Saints and then have a chance to get into the playoffs by beating the Lions in Week 17 . . . and lose.

Reddit: #17 (Last week: #17)

Dalvin Cook became the first back to rush for over 100 yards against the Bucs in over 20 games, but the Vikings were unable to convert long drives into points as Dan Bailey went 0/4 on field goals and extra points. Couple that with some questionable officiating, the Vikings’ banged up front seven generating zero pressure on Tom Brady and plenty of self-inflicted wounds and it all adds up to a real tough loss that knocks the Vikings down from wild card favorites to playoff long shots.

Danny Kelly, The Ringer: #17 (Last week: #15)

No commentary about the Vikings from The Ringer this week.

Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News: #15 (Last week: #15)

The Vikings were let down by their kicking game, but they also can’t make up enough for their defensive deficiencies with an injury-riddled and rebuilding group. The playoffs can still be reached, but they’re a shell of the division-round advancers from 2019.

Nate Davis, USA Today: #19 (Last week: #20)

Let’s summarize their pass rush – Minnesota’s leading sack man remains Yannick Ngakoue (5), who last played for Vikes in Week 6.

Frank Schwab, Yahoo! Sports: #15 (Last week: #15)

Dan Bailey’s four missed kicks and a baffling pass interference call on a Hail Mary sunk the Vikings. They had a shot to win if Bailey made a kick and the officials hadn’t handed the Bucs a free field goal. Instead, they probably need to win out to be in the playoff mix, and even that might not be enough.

Well, there wasn’t a whole lot of movement to be had for the Vikings, to be honest. Following the loss, only half of the 14 outlets that we poll for the Roundup moved the Vikings down in their rankings. Three of them actually moved the Vikings up, including one group moving them up three full spots, while the other four kept the purple where they had been at the previous week.

When you add it all up and average it all out, the Vikings’ average ranking barely changed from last week. It comes in at 16.64, not even half a spot below last week’s average of 16.43.

Here’s what that all looks like in visual form, the results of which you may click on for the purposes of embiggening. (That means to make it larger and, thereby, easier to read.)

Can we see the start of another upward trend next week? I sure hope so. We’ll soon find out when we bring you next week’s updated. . .and much more timely. . .Power Rankings Roundup.