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NFL Power Rankings: Vikings Fall a Few Spots

The Vikings took a tough, 37-30 loss on Monday Night Football against the Seattle Seahawks.

Minnesota moved to 8-4 and will have a quick turnaround as the team gets set to host the Detroit Lions at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday.

The experts released their Power Rankings lists heading into Week 14.

Here’s a look at where the Vikings rank:

9 (Down 3 Spots): Dan Hanzus – NFL.com

It was there for the Vikings. Minnesota ball, trailing by four, less than four minutes to play, three timeouts at their disposal. Kirk Cousins took the field looking to build on a strong night and exorcise some Monday night ghosts. But the Vikings went five-and-out and the offense never saw the field again in a 37-30 loss to the Seahawks. Cousins falls to 0-8 on the Monday Night Football stage, but put this loss on a Vikings defense that got carved up on the ground by Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny and through the air by Russell Wilson. Cousins' job was made that much more difficult when star running back Dalvin Cook exited the game midway through the third quarter with a clavicle injury. The Vikings are still in excellent position to claim a playoff spot, but they might have to win out to have any chance at the NFC North title.

10 (Down 3 Spots): Frank Schwab – Yahoo! Sports

It’s not that bad to lose at Seattle, though the Vikings have some tiebreaker problems with the Packers and are a game behind now. What’s concerning is the defense, which was so dominant two seasons ago and still has a lot of stars, simply hasn’t been very good. The Seahawks moved the ball at will, and that’s not too unusual for Vikings opponents this season.Kirk Cousins didn’t get it done in the end, but he certainly didn’t have much help from a defense that is supposed to be a lot better.

7 (Same Spot): Pete Prisco – CBS Sports

They lost a tough game Monday night at Seattle, but they showed well. If Dalvin Cook is lost for any length of time, that will be a big hit.

9 (Down 2 Spots): NFL Staff – Bleacher Report

To be fair, the Minnesota Vikings remain a very good football team more than capable of giving the Green Bay Packers all they can handle in the NFC North.

But after they fell in Seattle during the final game of Week 13, a familiar refrain is about to echo around the Vikings — and especially around quarterback Kirk Cousins.

The Vikings (under Cousins) just can't win the big ones.

In fairness, it wasn't Cousins who allowed over 200 rushing yards to the Seahawks on Monday night. It wasn't Cousins who lost two fumbles, and even his interception was a ball that bounced off the hands of wide receiver Stefon Diggs.

Injury was added to insult, too. Running back Dalvin Cook, who has been the focal point of the Minnesota offense this season, left the game with an injured shoulder. Thankfully, Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer indicated that the injury isn't believed to be serious.

That's good because the Vikings' margin for error has narrowed. At 8-4, they sit just one game ahead of the Los Angeles Rams with four to play for the second Wild Card.

Still, the schedule works in the Vikings' favor, as just one of their remaining opponents (the Packers) has a record above .500. That's most assuredly a good thing. Minnesota has lost all three games this season against teams that presently sport one.

Tied for 7 (Same Spot): The MMQB Staff – Sports Illustrated

Previous rank: 7

Points in poll: 206

Highest-place vote: 5 (3 voters)

Lowest-place vote: 10 (2 voters)

Last week’s result: Lost to Seattle, 37-30

This week: vs. Detroit

The Vikings stumbled in a tight one against the Seahawks on Monday Night Football, but they’re still hanging onto the second Wild Card spot in the NFC playoffs. Can they hold off the Rams down the stretch?

7 (Same Spot): Vinnie Iyer – Sporting News

The Vikings are still trying to make up ground against the Packers, and they're stuck relying on Kirk Cousins, Dalvin Cook and the offense to do it. The defense has more holes, especially against the pass, and the Seahawks loss hopefully didn't set the tone for their stretch run.

10 (Down 1 Spot): Nate Davis – USA TODAY Sports

Gave a solid account of themselves in a brutal venue even without a big chunk of their offensive firepower. Still, margin for error over closing Rams is dwindling dangerously.

7 (Down 1 Spot) Courtney Cronin – ESPN.com

By all accounts, Reiff has been decent — not great, not terrible — which has been the standard since he signed as a free agent in 2017. He's allowed four sacks and 15 total pressures on an offensive line that is improved but still a work in progress. Reiff is "under fire" because he's at risk of being a salary-cap casualty with his $13.2 million hit in 2020. The Vikings have a lot of hard financial decisions to make this offseason, and overpaying for a left tackle you don't view as a franchise player isn't the smartest thing to do when Brian O'Neill might eventually move over to that side.

10 (Down 4 Spots) Mike Florio – Pro Football Talk

It’s not the end of the world, but it’s the start of what would be a Super Bowl run the very hard way.

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