A weekly examination of the Vikings' ESPN.com Power Ranking:
Preseason: 17 | Last Week: 21 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002
The Vikings slid another two spots this week after their Week 1 loss to the Detroit Lions sent them down four spots in our Power Rankings. It appeared that the Vikings figured some things out in the second half of their 31-30 loss to the Bears on Sunday -- quarterback Christian Ponder went 10-for-16 for 146 yards in the second half, and the defense forced a pair of fourth-quarter turnovers -- but Minnesota is 0-2 because of an inability to finish drives with touchdowns and a handful of defensive breakdowns on the Bears' final drive.
Still, the Vikings' schedule does get a bit easier, beginning with their home opener Sunday against Cleveland. From there, they travel to London to face the Pittsburgh Steelers, and then get an early bye before another home game against the Carolina Panthers. If the Vikings want to build momentum and turn an 0-2 start into a playoff berth -- as they did in 2008 -- they've got to start this weekend.