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The Vikings are not the only hyped defense struggling in the NFL

Even the Bears got shredded by the Packers in Week 1.

After getting thrashed three consecutive weeks by the Packers, Bills and Rams, the Vikings' defense finally resembled its 2017 self in a huge road victory over the Eagles on Sunday. 

But overall, Minnesota's defense hasn't been the same as it was when it finished No. 1 in the NFL last season. But defense isn't just a problem for the Vikings: it's an issue for every team in the NFL.

The Vikings, Rams and Panthers were probably the three most hyped defenses in the NFC entering the season, but none of them have been consistently good. The Rams might have the most unstoppable offense in the league having scored 30+ points in all five games, but they've allowed 31 points in back-to-back games. 

Carolina? Same thing. They've been torched for 31 points in two straight games against the Bengals and Giants. 

Chicago is the only team in the NFC that hasn't been torched yet, although they did allow 24 second-half points to the Packers in a Week 1 loss. And it should be noted that their last three opponents, Seattle, Arizona and Tampa Bay, aren't exactly juggernauts. 

Washington entered Monday night as one of the top defenses in the NFL but Drew Brees and the Saints mauled them for 43 points. 

In the AFC, the best teams appear to be the Chiefs, Patriots and Jaguars, but even the stingy Jacksonville defense was no match at Arrowhead Stadium against Pat Mahomes and the high-powered Chiefs. 

New England's defense is leaky, and Baltimore, despite leading the NFL in scoring defense (15.3 points per game), got shelled in a Week 2 loss to the Bengals where they gave up 34 points. Baltimore will face an elite offense for the first time in a couple of weeks when they play the Saints. 

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Bottom line: the best defenses, the likes of which include Minnesota, Jacksonville, Baltimore and Chicago, have already proved that they can't hang with the best offenses – especially now that quarterbacks are getting more protection than ever. 

It's a truth Minnesota knows all too well after the Eagles roared past the Vikings' elite defense in last year's NFC title game.

The good news is that Kirk Cousins, Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs are firing on all cylinders, which should keep the Vikings in most games the rest of the season. 


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