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Notebook: Games to prove their standing?

Ben Leber (Matt York/AP)

The Vikings' last three games of the regular season come against playoff-caliber teams, two of which had a playoff berth wrapped up before last weekend's games. Winning all three could do wonders for the players' confidence. See what they had to say about that and hear from one player who has been on the other side with a depressing season last year.

The Vikings are trying not to look ahead at the big playoff picture in front of them. For one thing, they have the recent past to help curb their appetite to dream too much. Last year, the Vikings needed a win at home against the Washington Redskins to ensure a wild card berth in the playoffs. The lost 32-21 and closed the season out with a 22-19 overtime loss at Denver in a game that turned out...

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