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Minnesota Vikings schedule: Justin Jefferson’s offseason begins

2022-23 Minnesota Vikings schedule: Offseason

The Minnesota Vikings’ season is over. It may have ended on a sour note, losing to the New York Giants in the Wild Card round, but Kevin O’Connell’s first season as head coach went about as smoothly as one could reasonably ask for.

Now the Vikings have a challenge on their hands as they look to fix a defense that allowed the fifth-most points in football. We’ll see if longtime NFL coach Ed Donatell returns as the Vikings try and get more pieces to fit his 3-4 defense.

Minnesota Vikings roster outlook

  • QB – Kirk Cousins, Nick Mullens
  • RB – Dalvin Cook, Alexander Mattison, Kene Nwangwu, Ty Chandler
  • WR – Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen, KJ Osborn, Jalen Reagor, Jalen Nailor
  • TE – T.J. Hockenson, Irv Smith Jr., Johnny Mundt

In an offseason where hitting the reset button was a real possibility, the new Vikings leadership team of Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell largely kept the roster intact while adding complementary pieces all around.

Kirk Cousins has an offensive-minded head coach for the first time in purple, and he has their full support. He has one of the best groups of skill position players led by Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook, and Adam Thielen, yet the Vikes have several other sneaky candidates for a breakout year.

If the offensive line can improve (a big if), there’s no reason why Cousins can’t offer elite QB production under center in what’s expected to be a pass-heavy approach that gets his playmakers involved more than ever before.

In an attempt to rebuild the defense, they will switch to a 3-4 base under longtime coach Ed Donatell. With Danielle Hunter and Za’Darius Smith causing nightmares off the edge, as long as the two can stay healthy, the pass rush should be top-notch. Eric Kendricks resumes his role as one of the best middle linebackers in coverage and is joined by the run-stopping Jordan Hicks to fill out a high-IQ position group.

An improved front seven should make things easier on the back end, where the Vikings have struggled to plug the leaks aboard their ship. A new injection of talent from first-round pick Lewis Cine, and second-round pick Andrew Booth Jr, along with the return of Patrick Peterson, should fill out a strong secondary with Harrison Smith returning as a longtime leader.

The Vikings should have a playoff spot in their sights. Anything less would be considered a failure. Looking around the division and the NFC conference as a whole, there’s a reason for excitement heading into the 2022 season for Vikings fans.

Related: Justin Jefferson sets another NFL record in Minnesota Vikings’ latest game, hauls in catch of the year

Minnesota Vikings schedule: Season results

NFL: Arizona Cardinals at Minnesota Vikings
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Week 1 — Minnesota Vikings beat Green Bay Packers, 23-7

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Sep. 11Vikings 23, Packers 74:25 PMFOX

Week 2 — Minnesota Vikings lose to Philadelphia Eagles, 24-7

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Mon, Sep. 19Eagles 24, Vikings 78:30 PMABC

Week 3 — Minnesota Vikings outlast Detriot Lions to win 28-24

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Sep. 25Vikings 28, Lions 241:00 PMFOX

Week 4 — Minnesota Vikings beat New Orleans Saints 28-25

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Oct. 2Vikings 28, Saints 259:30 PMNFL Network
At Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, UK

Week 5 — Minnesota Vikings outpunch Chicago Bears 29-22

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Oct. 9Vikings 29, Bears 221:00 PMFOX

Week 6 — Minnesota Vikings sink Dolphins 24-16

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Oct. 16Vikings 24, Dolphins 161:00 PMFOX

Related: Predicting NFL playoff bracket and Super Bowl 2023 winner

Week 7 – Bye

Week 8 – Minnesota Vikings sail past Arizona Cardinals

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Oct. 30Vikings 34, Cardinals 261:00 PMFOX

Week 9 – Minnesota Vikings cruise past Washington Commanders

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Nov. 6Vikings 20, Commanders 171:00 PMFOX

Week 10 – Minnesota Vikings win game of the year over Buffalo Bills

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Nov. 13Vikings 33, Bills 301:00 PMFOX

Week 11 – Vikings get embarrassed by Dallas Cowboys

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Nov. 20Cowboys 40, Vikings 34:25 PMCBS

Week 12 – Vikings win key battle in primetime over Patriots

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Thu, Nov. 24Vikings 33, Patriots 268:20 PMNBC
Thanksgiving football

Week 13 – Vikings sail past New York Jets

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Dec. 4Vikings 27, Jets 221:00 PMCBS

Week 14 – Vikings get mauled by Detroit Lions

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Dec. 11Lions 34, Vikings 231:00 PMFOX

Related: NFL QB Rankings: Check our top-20 quarterbacks, where does Kirk Cousins fall?

Week 15 – Minnesota Vikings make NFL history

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sat, Dec. 17Vikings 39, Colts 36 (OT)1 PM ETNFL Network

Week 16 – Minnesota Vikings sneak past New York Giants on 61-yard boot

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sat, Dec. 24Vikings 27, Giants 241:00 PMFOX

Week 17 – Minnesota Vikings get embarrassed, allow Green Bay Packers a path to playoffs

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Jan. 1Packers 41, Vikings 174:25 PMCBS

Week 18 – Minnesota Vikings sink Chicago Bears

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun, Jan. 8Vikings 29, Bears 131 PMFOX

Wild Card – Minnesota Vikings get eliminated by New York Giants

Date:Matchup:Time (ET)TV Info
Sun. Jan. 15Giants 31, Vikings 244:30 PMFOX

Click here to see where the Vikings stack up in our latest edition of NFL power rankings

Minnesota Vikings 2022-23 schedule

NFL: New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Vikings schedule prediction: 11-6, 2nd place in NFC North

The Vikings fully believe they have assembled a playoff squad. Until they prove otherwise, there’s no reason to think the 14th-ranked offense from 2021 can’t improve with coach O’Connell taking the reins and all their top contributors returning.

It could be a slow transition to a new defense, but they’ve assembled the pieces, on paper, to improve as a unit in 2022. They have a healthy mix of engrained veteran leadership on both sides of the ball, along with some players who are among the very best at their position. Vikings fans should be excited about this team heading into 2022. If coaching really was the issue, we’re about to find out whether they’ve found a solution.

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