2016 Super Bowl Odds: Are Vikings Serious Title Threats?
The Minnesota Vikings appeared to take a positive step forward in 2015, when Mike Zimmer’s crew won the NFC North and almost won a first round playoff game.
Come 2016, they could have much bigger things in mind that winning their division and simply appearing in the playoffs. Per star running back Adrian Peterson, the Vikings could “win everything” this year.
Peterson gloated about Minnesota’s chances of making a deep playoff run in 2016 recently, suggesting that media pundits continue to overlook a team that isn’t just on the rise, but is now completely ready for the next step.
— NFL (@NFL) May 9, 2016
“Sit back and watch. Sit back and watch. You can be like, ‘I thought you guys were at least a couple of years away.’ Nope. You sit back and watch, this year.”
Peterson is as biased as can be for several reasons, as he’s a member of the Vikings and at 31 years old, has to sense that time could be running out on his storied NFL career.
Reason For Optimism
Then again, Peterson could be on to something here. Judging off of a pretty stout 2015 season that saw Peterson scoff at a wasted 2014 (played in just one game due to an off field child abuse scandal) by running for over 1,400 yards and 11 touchdowns, it looks like age may be just a number for Minnesota’s prized rusher.
Throw in a quality defense and a potential impact wide receiver in first round rookie Laquan Treadwell, and there is every reason for the Vikings to get excited.
Bridgewater is Key
The key to the hype for Minnesota, of course, continues to be quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. It’s possible Peterson is bypassing that fact and trying to beef up the rest of the team’s confidence early on, or perhaps he truly believes Bridgewater can get the job done.
While that still remains possible in Bridgewater’s third NFL season, he certainly did not get the job done in key moments last year and will need to be much more consistent if the Vikings want to go deep into the playoffs.
What Does Vegas Say?
There is also the betting world’s take. Per Bovada, the Vikings carry +2200 odds to win the Super Bowl in 2016, which gives them the ninth best odds to win it all.
That’s surprisingly a solid spot for a team that still has a fairly unproven head coach, an aging running back and a shaky quarterback. Playing in the same division as the Green Bay Packers and the same conference as the Seattle Seahawks, Arizona Cardinals and Carolina Panthers doesn’t exactly work in Minnesota’s favor, either.
Vegas doesn’t care, it seems. They see the upside Peterson does, as the Vikings have the core pieces necessary to take a big leap.
History suggests one or more of last year’s playoff teams could hit a wall and regress, too, so it’s possible the Vikings keep chipping away, get a little bit better and inch closer to their first title ever.
It’s still unlikely, but it’s interesting to see Minnesota’s odds be fairly decent, as well as Peterson be so confident early on. That doesn’t mean we suggest betting all you’ve got on the Vikes, but even a $100 bet could bring home $2,200 if Minnesota does, in fact, win “everything”.
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