The Vikings 2021 season is in the rearview mirror.
Minnesota finished 8-9, a record that led to the dismissal of General Manager Rick Spielman and Head Coach Mike Zimmer on Monday.
Here's a look at where the Vikings rank heading into the 2022 offseason:
No. 21 (same spot): Dan Hanzus – NFL.com
The 2021 season felt like a potential make-or-break year for Head Coach Mike Zimmer and General Manager Rick Spielman … and that's exactly how it played out. The Vikings stumbled to a disappointing 8-9 finish and both men were shown the door on Monday after lengthy tenures with the organization. While most of the focus on Vikings success or failure tends to focus on Kirk Cousins, it was the regression of Minnesota's defense that ultimately led to the team's downturn. The Vikes' D ranked 30th in football this season — four years after boasting the league's top-ranked unit and going to the NFC Championship Game. The incoming regime needs to pour resources into that side of the ball.
No. 21 (same spot): Frank Schwab – Yahoo! Sports
Coach Mike Zimmer and GM Rick Spielman are out. Neither one is that bad at his job, but it was time for the Vikings to turn the page. It was getting harder to believe there was another level the franchise could go with them. The problem is the next step isn't guaranteed to be forward.
No. 21 (same spot): Pete Prisco – CBS Sports
With Mike Zimmer fired, they are in the market for a new coach. The issue now is what to do with Kirk Cousins going forward.
No. 23 (down 1 spot): MMQB Staff – Sports Illustrated
This was a fitting final year of the Mike Zimmer era, as the Vikings were close but just not quite good enough. There's plenty of talent on the roster, but we'll see what kind of changes are made with a new GM and coach in place.
No. 21 (same spot): Mike Florio – Pro Football Talk
"Just good enough" is finally no longer good enough for the Vikings.
No. 21 (same spot): Lindsay Jones & Zach Berman – The Athletic
What did we learn? Mike Zimmer's eight-year run in Minnesota ran its course. The Vikings missed the postseason for the third time in four years, and Zimmer seemed to know what awaited after a final win on Sunday. It's easy to pan the Vikings acquisition of Kirk Cousins in 2018 to try and push a team that had reached the NFC Championship Game over the edge, but don't overlook a defense that regressed during Zimmer's tenure from a top-10 group to a bottom-10 group.