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NFL 2012 Schedule: Vikings Among NFC North Teams With Favorable Week 1 Matchup

The NFC North projects to be among the strongest conferences in the NFL this season and on paper it appears at least three of the teams have a favorable matchup for Week 1 to get off to a strong start.

After the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants kick off the season on Wednesday night, the four teams from the NFC North will start the 2012 season on Sunday afternoon. The Minnesota Vikings have several remaining questions heading into Week 1 with youth and injuries at key positions. Their opening game at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars, a team with similar questions surrounding them, should provide some answers for Minnesota.

The Chicago Bears also have a favorable opener with rookie quarterback Andrew Luck making his first start with the Indianapolis Colts at Soldier Field. Luck and the Colts are clearly rebuilding while the Bears are looking to get off to a quick start in the division.

The Detroit Lions also have their sights set on winning the NFC North and will be heavy favorites at home when they host the St. Louis Rams.

The Green Bay Packers are the one NFC North team facing a strong Super Bowl contender when they host the San Francisco 49ers at 4:25 p.m. on Sunday at Lambeau Field. That's the type of matchup in Green Bay that brings visions of snow flurries and bundled-up fans, but the forecast for Week 1 in Green Bay includes sunshine and temperatures in the 70s.

Stick with SB Nation Minnesota for more coverage of the Vikings, or head over to The Daily Norseman. For news and analysis from all 32 teams across the league, SB Nation's dedicated NFL hub has you covered.

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