The 3 Best Parts of the Vikings’ 2024 Schedule

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

It’s here. The NFL released the 2024 schedule on Wednesday evening, and although the Minnesota Vikings have a third-place schedule, she ain’t a cakewalk.

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The club technically has nine home games, as allotted to all NFC teams this season, but one is in London. Minnesota also has a brutal first half of the season, at least per the way opponents’ rosters are constructed in May.

vikings
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Here’s the full schedule:

  • Week 1 — at New York Giants
  • Week 2 — vs. San Francisco 49ers
  • Week 3 — vs. Houston Texans
  • Week 4 — at Green Bay Packers
  • Week 5 — vs. New York Jets (London)
  • Week 6 — Bye
  • Week 7 — vs. Detroit Lions
  • Week 8 — at Los Angeles Rams (TNF)
  • Week 9 — vs. Indianapolis Colts
  • Week 10 — at Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Week 11 — at Tennessee Titans
  • Week 12 — at Chicago Bears
  • Week 13 — vs. Arizona Cardinals
  • Week 14 — vs. Atlanta Falcons
  • Week 15 — vs. Chicago Bears (MNF)
  • Week 16 — at Seattle Seahawks
  • Week 17 — vs. Green Bay Packers
  • Week 18 — at Detroit Lions

And these are the three best aspects, ranked in ascending order (No. 1 = best aspect).

3. The Giants in Week 1

Vikings
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports.

Normally, a road game out of the gate isn’t cause for excitement or optimism. Yet, when considering the following six games for the Vikings, the Giants are an early reprieve.

New York is scheduled to win 6.5 games in 2024, according to oddsmakers, which is akin to Minnesota’s win total, depending on the sportsbook. The NFL could’ve assigned a playoff team right away, but at least in Week 1, Minnesota isn’t facing some deadly opponent.

No matter the quarterback, Sam Darnold or J.J. McCarthy, at New York is a reasonably winnable contest — unlike the following few games.

2. Green Bay Out of the Way Early

the Panic Button
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings fans have mostly horrid memories of facing the Packers in December, so getting the Cheese Team in the rearview early causes smiles. Lambeau won’t be frigid on September 29th — it might even be hot — and weather won’t play a major factor.

In fact, Minnesota has found luck not playing the Packers late in the season recently, defeating them in 2020 in October and last year during the game when Kirk Cousins fell injured.

As a rule of thumb, taking on Green Bay before crunchtime bodes well for the purple team.

1. The Mushy Part — Weeks 9-16

Vikings Trade
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This is the mushy part:

Week 9 — vs. Indianapolis Colts
Week 10 — at Jacksonville Jaguars
Week 11 — at Tennessee Titans
Week 12 — at Chicago Bears
Week 13 — vs. Arizona Cardinals
Week 14 — vs. Atlanta Falcons
Week 15 — vs. Chicago Bears (MNF)
Week 16 — at Seattle Seahawks

This is advantageous for Kevin O’Connell’s team in two ways:

  1. If the Vikings are near .500 and sniffing postseason contention, well, Week 9 represents the opening of the schedule when murderer’s row is complete. None of the games listed above are utterly inconquerable. Therefore, if Minnesota can be 3-4 or 4-3 at the start of the Colts showdown, it could realistically effectuate a Wildcard push based on the following eight games.
  2. J.J. McCarthy is the Vikings’ quarterback of the future, and if he’s ready to play anytime in 2024, this eight-game stretch would show him a bit of everything: several road games in a row, a Monday nighter versus Chicago, and an unfriendly spot for Minnesota in Seattle. The eight-game spurt is a terrific time for a rookie passer to gain his sea legs.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.

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