Breaking Down The 2015 Minnesota Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings may just very well be the sleeper team to bet on -- and for good reason.

Last year they bit and scratched their way to a 7-9 record in a season when they their best player was suspended for the season, the Vikings look to many NFL betting experts like the team to bet on when the NFL odds, specifically the point spread, is in your favor.

With sophomore QB Teddy Bridgewater looking ready to have the playbook opened up for him, the return of Adrian Peterson to the Vikings offense will mean bad, bad things for opposing defenses.

Even the NFL odds-makers are on board as they have listed the 2015 Minnesota Vikings at 33-1 odds to win Super Bowl 50.

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Betting Preview

Is AP still an elite rusher after a year off?

  • 2014 Season Summary: 7-9-0, Finished 3rd in NFC North Division
  • 2014 Points Scored: 325 points (20.3/g), 20th of 32 in the NFL
  • 2014 Points Allowed: 343 points (21.4/g), 11th
  • Coach: Mike Zimmer (7-9-0)
  • Offensive Coordinator: Norv Turner
  • Defensive Coordinator: George Edwards
  • Stadium: US Bank Stadium

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Betting Odds:

  • To Win Super Bowl 50: +6200
  • To Win the NFC: +2200
  • To Win the NFC North: +1000

Minnesota Vikings 2014 Betting Trends:

  • Overall Against the Spread Record: 10-6
  • ATS Record at home: 5-3
  • ATS Record away from home: 5-3
  • ATS Record as favorites: 3-2
  • ATS Record as underdogs: 7-4
  • Over/Under Record: 6-10

NFC North 2014 Standings:

NFC NORTH W L T PCT PF PA HOME ROAD DIV PCT NFC PCT AFC STREAK
Green Bay 12 4 0 .750 486 348 8-0 4-4 5-1 .833 9-3 .750 3-1 Won 2
Detroit 11 5 0 .688 321 282 7-1 4-4 5-1 .833 9-3 .750 2-2 Lost 1
Minnesota 7 9 0 .438 325 343 5-3 2-6 1-5 .167 6-6 .500 1-3 Won 1
Chicago 5 11 0 .312 319 442 2-6 3-5 1-5 .167 4-8 .333 1-3 Lost 5

2015 Minnesota Vikings Offense:

As a rookie, quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (2919 yards, 14 TDs, 12 INTS, 85.2 rating) led the Vikings to a respectable 6-6 record while averaging 22.1 points a game in 12 starts, posting the 11th-best completion percentage in the NFL (64.4). And he did all that with Adrian Peterson on the commissioner's exempt list, tight end (who is usually an in-experienced QB's best weapon) Kyle Rudolph (24 rec, 231 yards, 2 TDs) and two starting offensive linemen sidelined with various ailments, and left tackle Matt Kalil playing poorly through injuries.

To help get Bridgewater out of third and long trouble, the Vikings brain trust brought in enigmatic deep-threat Mike Wallace (67 rec, 862 yards, 10 TDs)

"I like Mike Wallace," Zimmer said. "He's got some fire and he comes up to me all of the time and says, 'You can't stop me today,' and stuff like that. Hey, I like those guys that are competitors. He works extremely hard. I think he's developing a good relationship with everybody on the football team and not just Teddy (Bridgewater)."

"Most definitely," Wallace told FOX Sports North. "The guys are real cool. The coaches, I love coach Zimmer. Fired up and everything, just like coach Norv, but a little different. My coach (wide receivers coach George Stewart), I think I have the greatest group of coaches on the team all together, just the people I have to be around is fun. They keep it exciting every day."

Clearly, this team benefits from having Norv Turner spinning the wheels on offense. Even without Peterson, Turner managed to put together a rushing attack that averaged 112.8 yards a game, ranking 14th in the league. Now with AP's return and the addition of Wallace this offense is on the cusp of being must bet team, week in and week out.

  • Key Additions: RB DuJuan Harris, QB Shaun Hill.
  • Key Departures: FB Jerome Felton, WR Greg Jennings, T J'Marcus Webb QB Christian Ponder, F Vladimir Ducasse.

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Projected Offensive Starters:

  • QB Teddy Bridgewater
  • WR Mike Wallace
  • WR Charles Johnson
  • TE Kyle Rudolph
  • RB Adrian Peterson
  • FB Zach Line
  • LT Matt Kalil
  • LG Joe Berger
  • C John Sullivan
  • RG Brandon Fusco
  • RT Phil Loadholt

2015 Minnesota Vikings Defense:

The Vikings defense ranked 7th against the pass and 25th against the run combining for the 14th-ranked defense in the league which was a major contributing factor in Minnesota's modest success last season.

It was clear, early in his tenure, when head coach that Mike Zimmer began assembling a group of young defensive players he could mold that he had a plan on what identity he wanted for this team.

"That's the first thing — getting them to believe that you can actually coach. Part of the reason I went into a lot of meetings with them was not only to show them what I was looking for, but to show them that I knew what I was doing. The reaction seemed to be, `OK, this guy can coach,' or whatever. I think that helped them trust me", Zimmer said about his approach in his second year.

Zimmer's defensive system is pretty vanilla when put up against those of the Seahawks or Rex Ryan/Bill Belichick coached teams, but it's historically worked because of the coach's obsessive attention to detail. Add his maniacal adherence to a coaching style that requires defensive ends to know the responsibilities of defensive backs, especially when at the line of scrimmage. He enforces how the a mistake from one might affect the success of the other.

The Vikings' defense made a significant jump in its first year under Zimmer, and now that the coach has a foundation with his defensive group, he can use the continuity to add some wrinkles to the scheme, trusting his players are fluent in it.

  • Key Additions: ILB Casey Matthews, LS Kevin McDermott, CB Terrance Newman
  • Key Departures: MLB Jasper Brinkley, DT Corey Wooton.

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Projected Defensive Starters (Base 4-3 D):

  • DE Brian Robison
  • DT Sharrif Floyd
  • DT Linval Joseph
  • DE Everson Griffen
  • WLB Chad Greenway
  • MLB Eric Kendricks
  • SLB Anthony Barr
  • CB Terence Newman
  • CB Xavier Rhodes
  • SS Antone Exum Jr.
  • FS Harrison Smith

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Draft Class:

  • Round 1, Pick 11: CB Trae Waynes, Michigan State (46 tackles, 3 INTs)
  • Round 2, Pick 45: ILB Eric Kendricks, UCLA (149 tackles, 4.0 sacks)
  • Round 3, Pick 88: DE Danielle Hunter, LSU (73 tackles, 1.5 sacks)
  • Round 4, Pick 110 OT T.J. Clemmings, Pittsburgh
  • Round 5, Pick 143: TE MyCole Pruitt, Southern Illinois (81 rec, 2601 yards, 13 TDs)
  • Round 5, Pick 146: WR Stefon Diggs, Maryland (62 rec, 792 yards, 5 TDs)
  • Round 6, Pick 185: OT Tyrus Thompson, Oklahoma
  • Round 6, Pick 193: DE B.J. Dubose, Louisville (42 tackles, 4.0 sacks)
  • Round 6, Pick 228: OT B. Austin Shepherd, Alabama
  • Round 7, Pick 232: OLB Edmond Robinson, Newberry (69 tackles, 2.5 sacks)

Minnesota Vikings 2015 Schedule and Point Spreads:

  • Week 1 Mon, Sep 14 (MIN +4.5) @ San Francisco 10:20 PM ESPN
  • Week 2 Sun, Sep 20 (MIN pk) vs Detroit 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 3 Sun, Sep 27 (MIN pk) vs San Diego 1:00 PM CBS
  • Week 4 Sun, Oct 4 (MIN +7) @ Denver 4:25 PM FOX
  • Week 5 BYE WEEK
  • Week 6 Sun, Oct 18 (MIN -1) vs Kansas City 1:00 PM CBS
  • Week 7 Sun, Oct 25 (MIN +5) @ Detroit 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 8 Sun, Nov 1 (MIN +2) @ Chicago 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 9 Sun, Nov 8 (MIN pk) vs St. Louis 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 10 Sun, Nov 15 (MIN +1.5) @ Oakland 4:05 PM FOX
  • Week 11 Sun, Nov 22 (MIN +3) vs Green Bay 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 12 Sun, Nov 29 (MIN +1.5) @ Atlanta 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 13 Sun, Dec 6 (MIN +4.5) vs Seattle 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 14 Thu, Dec 10 (MIN +5.5) @ Arizona 8:25 PM NFL
  • Week 15 Sun, Dec 20 (MIN -2.5) vs Chicago 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 16 Sun, Dec 27 (MIN -1.5) vs New York Giants 1:00 PM FOX
  • Week 17 Sun, Jan 3 @ Green Bay 1:00 PM FOX

Connect With The Minnesota Vikings:

AP is back and from all reports, he is beyond in game shape. Mike Wallace has the wheels and the hands. The Packers will win the NFC North, but if Teddy Bridgewater can take the next step, this team has a real shot at the Wild Card spot.

How To Bet the Minnesota Vikings Futures In 2015: Vikings will go 8-8 and miss the playoffs.

Sources:

http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/min/2015.htm
http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/teams/min/
http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/min/minnesota-vikings
http://www.nfl.com/teams/profile?team=MIN