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NFL Power Rankings: Vikings Break into Top 3 After 7 Straight Wins?

The Vikings are in a good place with five games left to play in the regular season.

Minnesota defeated the Detroit Lions 30-23 on Thanksgiving Day to improve to 9-2 and take a three-game lead in the NFC North.

The Vikings have won seven games straight and look to keep the winning streak going against the defending NFC Champion Atlanta Falcons (7-4).

Minnesota will play at the brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the first time on Sunday.

The experts released their NFL Power Rankings lists heading into Week 13 on Tuesday morning as the Vikings seek another victory on the road.

We'll take a look at where the Vikings rank after the victory and how their rank changed from Week 12 below:

3: (Up 1 Spot): Elliott Harrison –

The Vikings prove every week that they are a principal player in the Lombardi chase. Case Keenum might not be in the MVP stratosphere, but the journeyman has certainly tabled the "When will Teddy Bridgewater start again?" discussion for now -- and the foreseeable future. Keenum provides Minnesota with the best chance to win the Super Bowl this year, and that is what the Vikes should be playing for ... right? Wonder if last Thursday the Lions noticed Minnesota using Latavius Murray and Jerick McKinnon -- neither of whom is the Vikings' RB1 -- and thought, So THAT'S what a running game looks like! Wow. Cool. Can we get one of those? Jim? Jim Bob? Bueller?

4: (Up 1 Spot): Pete Prisco – CBS Sports

*Case Keenum has proven he should be the quarterback, but now must show it again on the road against Atlanta. The Vikings defense shows up every week. *

5: (Down 1 Spot):

Sam Bradford* played well before his injury, and Case Keenumhas been great with Bradford out. As a result, the Vikings have the best team Total QBR (74) this season. Give credit to the pass protection, too. They've allowed 12 sacks this year, tied for fewest in the NFL.*

4: (Up 1 Spot): Vinnie Iyer – Sporting News

Case Keenum keeps balling out, perhaps motivated by the fact that Mike Zimmer is going week-to-week on starting him. But how about the replacement running game with Latavius Murray and Jerick McKinnon, and a defense that's stout on every level? That's a good foundation for any QB's success.

This week: at Falcons, a re-rising NFC power

4: (Up 1 Spot): Frank Schwab – Yahoo Sports

If the NFL voted for MVP like Major League Baseball and the ballot included 10 names (NFL MVP voters only vote for a winner, not for second or third place), wouldn't Case Keenum have to be on a 10-man ballot? Keenum has played very well for a team that lost quarterback Sam Bradford after Week 1 and didn't get Teddy Bridgewater back until recent weeks. Quarterbacks always get too much credit or blame, but it's hard to deny that Keenum has been a big part of a team that would get a first-round bye if the season ended today.

4: (Same Spot):USA TODAY Sports

Judging by the numbers anyway (70 catches, 1,005 yards in 11 games), Adam Thielen deserves to be mentioned in conjunction with Randy Moss.

4: (Up 1 Spot): MMQB Staff –Sports Illustrated

*Last Week's Rank: 5*

*Points in MMQB Power Poll: 437*

*Highest-Place Vote: Third (4)*

*Lowest-Place Vote: Fifth (2)*

*Last Week's Result: Win at Detroit, 30-23*

*Week 13 Opponent: at Atlanta*

4: (Up 1 Spot): Mark Maske –Washington Post

Case Keenum keeps playing well and is maintaining his hold on the starting QB job. There remains no reason for Coach Mike Zimmer to make a switch to Teddy Bridgewater yet. The Vikings have had a bit of break since their Thanksgiving win at Detroit and are heading into difficult road tests at Atlanta and Carolina the next two Sundays.

3: (Up 1 Spot) Chris Simms –Bleacher Report

We've known this Vikings defense is for real for a while. That isn't some urban myth.


Right now, the Vikings are hands down one of the best teams in football. They showed that against Detroit, despite some questionable calls going against them. Minnesota continues to answer every question that comes its way down the stretch.

The Vikings possess unreal defensive talent, have Latavius Murray going in the run game and have three playmaking pass-catchers in Kyle Rudolph, Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs. Opponents cannot just game-plan to stop one guy or one area of the team and hope to win.

The Vikings are capable of winning a Super Bowl this year.

3: (Up 1 Spot) Manish Mehta – New York Daily News

Like it or not, Case Keenum should be in the MVP conversation. A pair of tough road tests in Atlanta and Carolina are up next for the journeyman quarterback.**

3: (Up 2 spots) Adam Stites – SB Nation

The Vikings are the owners of a seven-game winning streak after beating the *Lions, 30-23, on Thanksgiving.*

It essentially closed the door on the NFC North race, giving the Vikings a three-game lead with five weeks left in the season. But it also bumped Minnesota into the No. 2 seed in the NFC.

That Week 11 win over the Rams looks even better a week later, and the tiebreaker over Los Angeles could prove important.

4: Mike Florio Pro Football Talk**

They're starting to feel like a potential Super Bowl team. Which means that the inevitable implosion is coming.

4: (Same Spot) Brad Biggs – Chicago Tribune

Defensive end Everson Griffen has to be in the running for Defensive Player of the Year.

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