Our own Matt Miller is predicting just a one-win improvement over last year's dismal 3-13 season. The big boards in Las Vegas have set the Vikings' over/under win total at just six. Only three teams have a lower win total to bet on: the Browns, Colts and Jaguars.
One of the very few positives that comes out of train wreck of a season like Minnesota had last year is low expectations. How the Vikings careened from a play or two away from a Super Bowl appearance to 3-13 in just two seasons has been well documented.
It played out that the 2011 season was one that was weighed down with a lot of false hope. The team was much worse off depth-wise than most experts thought. The signing of Donovan McNabb to lead a team that was a piece or two away from a long playoff push was foolhardy on multiple levels.
For Vikings fans, it's time to move forward and figure out how the team can once again become playoff contenders. How long the Vikings' rebuild will take is anybody's guess at this point, but it can't be argued that they're not heading in the right direction.
Here are the five most encouraging signs for the Vikings and their fans as they head toward the 2012 season.