The Vikings endured an up-and-down season in 2018, going 8-7-1 and missing the postseason despite having supersized expectations in training camp.
Minnesota struggled to find much consistency in 2018, as the Vikings were never more than two games above or one game below .500.
Adam Rank of NFL.com recently looked at the defining moment for each team in the 2018 season and came away with one for Minnesota that represented the Vikings roller-coaster season.
Rank said that the moment that stands out to him regarding the Vikings came in Week 3 against Buffalo when Kirk Cousins threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Rudolph with roughly three minutes left in the fourth quarter of a 27-6 loss.
The Vikings won in Week 1. Tied Green Bay in Week 2. And with a Thursday nighter against the Rams looming in Week 4, it was reasonable to predict they might overlook the lowly Bills a bit in Week 3. Well, more than a bit – they were down 27-0 late in the fourth quarter. Cousins found Rudolph for a meaningless score late to avoid the shutout, which was emblematic for this fraudulent team. Of course, the Vikes missed the two-point conversion. Just like they missed the playoffs.
The Vikings were 1-0-1 after beating the 49ers and getting a tie against the Packers before the Week 3 game against the Bills.
But Minnesota was never in this one as early turnovers by the Vikings helped Buffalo get out to a double-digit lead.
Each team gained exactly 292 yards of total offense, but the Vikings lost the turnover battle (3-0) and possessed the ball for less than 25 minutes in the disappointing loss.
SI ranks Vikings 15th in final poll
Football season is over, which means media outlets are releasing their final power rankings for the 2018 season.
The Vikings were ranked 14th by ESPN as they took a look at the 2019 season, and Sports Illustrated recently had the Vikings in a similar spot.
Sports Illustrated had a panel of eight experts give their vote, and the final tally had the Vikings ranked 15th in the power rankings.
The highest-place vote the Vikings received was 14th, and the lowest-place vote regarding Minnesota was 16th.
Both ESPN and Sports Illustrated's rankings were spot on with how the Vikings finished the season. Minnesota's 8-7-1 record slotted them with the 15th-best record in the NFL.