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The Minnesota Vikings started out the season with a 5-2 record and provided one of the most surprising storylines of the 2012 NFL season.
After losing three of their last four games, it's clear that the Vikings are not going to make any noise in the playoffs. In fact, I'll be shocked if this team ends up winning more than eight games.
Christian Ponder's solid play to start the season was a big key to the Vikings' success.
During the first four games, he threw four touchdowns and zero interceptions, and the Vikings went 3-1. Since then, however, Ponder has fallen apart, throwing six touchdowns and eight interceptions in the past five games.
Furthermore, the team's defense—which had been excellent to start the season—has given up an average of 29.5 points in the last four games.
With five games against the NFC North left on the schedule and road games against the St. Louis Rams and Houston Texans, the Vikings are in for a rough second half.
Prediction: After starting the season with a 5-4 record, the Vikings will finish at 7-9.