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Buccaneers vs. Vikings 2012: Minnesota fans still upbeat despite blowout loss

Despite an ugly 36-17 loss at the hands of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night, Minnesota Vikings fans are still happy about where the team is halfway through the year.

Adam Bettcher

The Minnesota Vikings received a 36-17 pounding at the hands of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night in Minnesota. The Vikings' defense was torched by Josh Freeman and Doug Martin, while the offense besides Adrian Peterson was never really able to get much going.

Despite the ugly loss, Minnesota fans are not panicking. Christopher Gates of SB Nation's Vikings blog Daily Norseman is still very pleased with where the team is halfway through the season:

And yet, despite all that, I'm not terribly angry. I'm not depressed. I'm not going through any of the usual emotions that tend to pop up after a Vikings' loss. With the week that my wife and I have had. . .hell, even just the last 48 hours. . .I think I've gained some new perspective on things, and that losses just aren't really worth getting bent out of shape over. So, I'm going to attempt to put this in a positive light.

Consider this. . .if I had told you back in July or August that the Minnesota Vikings would be 5-3 after the first eight games of their season, would you have taken it? I'm guessing that you probably would have.

Gates makes a good point. Coming off a 3-13 season, Minnesota did not have high expectations. Peterson had suffered an ACL injury at the end of last year and Christian Ponder was still a huge question mark. Most people pegged the Vikings for last place in the division.

Now, even with this loss, Minnesota is in a battle for the division crown. Peterson has shown that he's back to full strength. Ponder, while still shaky at times, has made progress. At worst, the Vikings will finish the week 1.5 games behind the Chicago Bears in second place.

Things could certainly unravel for Minnesota, which has lost two out of its last three. But the wheels are not off the bus yet. The Vikings will try and get back on track in Week 9 against the Seattle Seahawks.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.