There are still four months until the first NFL regular season game, yet the NFL experts are coming out with their new power rankings following last weekend's draft.
The early report card on the Vikings contains both good and bad news. Most experts think the Vikings are a team on the rise, with a young nucleus of talented players – including a promising young quarterback – coming off another solid draft.
The best evaluation comes from CBS Sports' Pete Prisco, who bumped the Vikings up six spots – the highest such jump of any team in the NFL.
"GM Rick Spielman had another good draft (Trae Waynes, Eric Kendricks) and this team is loaded with young talent. If Teddy Bridgewater continues to grow, they could be a playoff team."
FOX Sports seems to agree with Prisco as they have the Vikings ranked 17th – noting that after the draft the offensive line is really the only remaining area of concern.
NFL.com ranks the Vikings 18th, but thinks a great draft has closed the gap between them and the Lions, who are 11th.
"Blast the horn thing no one can spell: Minnesota had a doggone solid draft! (Gjallarhorn – looked it up on Wikieverything.) I provided my own 'best and worst' of the 2015 NFL Draft here, and gave the Vikings multiple positive marks. A quality haul indeed. And while these rankings don't reflect it just yet, the space between the Lions at 11 and the Vikings at 18 is thisclose."
Following the draft, ESPN wasn't so optimistic on the Vikings chances in 2015. They dropped the Vikings four spots from their last rankings last year, all the way down to 24th – without really saying why.
"Minnesota quietly went 7-9 last season and has now made 49 picks in the past five drafts. Can Teddy Bridgewater lead this young team back to the playoffs?"
Apparently ESPN doesn't think so, but there is still a lot to be decided between now and the start of the playoffs.