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Could the Vikings go 16-0?

Six weeks into the 2016 NFL season, there’s been no shortage of surprises across the league. No storyline is topping the emergence of the Minnesota Vikings, however. The Vikes have rolled through the competition en route to a perfect 5-0 record, and oddsmakers have taken notice.

Prior to kickoff in Week 1, Minny had a +2500 chance to hoist the Lombardi Trophy at Bovada. But entering Week 7, the Vikings price was sitting at +700 – behind only the powerhouse New England Patriots atop Super Bowl futures.

Just how good are the Vikings? Online sportsbook BetOnline is offering a prop on the purple and gold finishing the campaign undefeated, with the YES option coming in at +1300 and the NO available for -6000 chalk.

While it’s going to be a tall order for Minnesota to go 16-0, it’s not improbable. Since the NFL expanded to a 16-game regular season in 1978, only the 2007 New England Patriots have accomplished the feat. Prior to that, the 1972 Miami Dolphins (14-0), 1942 Chicago Bears (11-0) and 1934 Bears (13-0) ended the year without a loss.

Minnesota’s smash-mouth defense is a major reason for their new-found success. Heading into Week 6, the Vikings defensive line ranks No. 1 overall in the NFL with 17.0 sacks for 132 yards. The unit is fourth in total tackles at 77, and the defense as a whole is allowing a league-low 12.6 points per game.

After Teddy Bridgewater was lost for the year in the preseason, there was an obvious hole at the quarterback position. Rather than trust the underwhelming Shaun Hill, Vikings general manager Rick Spielman turned heads by shelling out a first-round pick in 2017 and a fourth-round selection in 2018 for embattled signal-caller Sam Bradford. The move was ridiculed at the time, but it’s the Vikings who are laughing now.

Bradford has re-energized his career in the Gopher State, as the 28-year-old has amassed 990 yards through the air for six touchdowns in four games. Bradford hasn’t thrown an interception yet, and his 109.8 quarterback rating and 70.4 completion percentage are well above his previous career bests.

As a Packers fan, it pains me to say this, but the Vikings are legitimate Super Bowl contenders. Sports bettors would be wise to jump on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.

Will the Minnesota Vikings go 16-0 in the 2016 NFL season?
  • YES +1300
  • NO -6000
Odds as of October 18 at BetOnline