2017 NFL Power Rankings Preseason Week 2: Los Angeles Rams take major step forward

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /

16. Minnesota Vikings (17)

Even if it was against the Buffalo Bills, the defense of the Minnesota Vikings looked pretty solid during their preseason debut, and if that success can carry over to the regular season, this team may have a fighting chance in the NFC North. By playing in the same division of a high-powered offense like the Green Bay Packers, the Vikings realize how much of a difference their defense could make.

As for the offense, Dalvin Cook may have only finished with 13 rushing yards on five carries, but his ability to catch four passes for 30 yards shows why there’s so much excitement surrounding the former Florida State standout heading into his rookie year. Losing Adrian Peterson was no easy decision on Minnesota’s end, but between the duo of Cook and Latavius Murray, the offense may end up being better off.

Speaking of the offense, the pressure is on Sam Bradford to help lead the Vikings to a postseason run after giving up a first-round pick to land the quarterback before last season. Sure, the argument can be made that Bradford doesn’t deserve all the blame when looking at all of the injuries Minnesota suffered on both sides of the football, but the veteran should feel extra motivated to elevate his game since this technically is a contract year.