Sports

Vikes simply weren't good enough in 2020

Tue 1-5-2021

MINNEAPOLIS - The Minnesota Vikings missed the playoffs by one game. They had two losses by one point and two other one-score defeats.

This finish was hardly a close call, however.

The prevailing feeling from the Vikings was a full realization they weren’t good enough to keep playing.

They went 7-9 in coach Mike Zimmer's seventh season, the same record he had in his first year. The Vikings gave up 475 points, the third-most in team history.

The deterioration of the defense offset significant strides by the offense, including rookie wide receiver Justin Jefferson.

Minnesota knows who it will be playing in the 2021 regular season.

As usual, the Vikings will play NFC North Division opponents Chicago, Detroit and Green Bay twice, once at home and once on the road.

The remaining 10 games will be against teams from the AFC North and NFC West, and the teams that, like the Vikings, finished third in their division from the NFC East and NFC South.

In addition to the division foes, the other home opponents are the Los Angeles Rams, Seattle, Cleveland and Pittsburgh. The other road opponents are Arizona, San Francisco, Baltimore, Cincinnati and Carolina.

There are nine games against teams that are in the playoffs this season. Two each against the Bears and Packers, and the matchups with the Rams, Seahawks, Browns, Steelers and Ravens.

If the NFL approves expansion to a 17-game schedule, the Vikings would have another game. The league hasn't announced how that opponent would be selected.