Max from Washington, D.C. thinks the Vikings will be leaving Minnesota and, most likely, landing in Los Angeles following the 2012 NFL season. "Assuming the NFL wishes to keep the Vikings in the NFC," he writes, "could we see a realignment with the NFC West?"
Mike Sando: The feel from Minnesota has changed some since Max submitted this question. There's now a sense the Vikings might be able to gain ground on a new stadium, after all. But this remains a volatile situation.
If the Vikings did move to Los Angeles, I'd favor realignment as Max suggested. The Vikings and St. Louis Rams would trade divisional affiliations under the most logical solution.
Breaking up the Vikings' longstanding NFC North rivalries would be difficult, but the rivalries between the Vikings and their current division require engagement from Minnesota fans to flourish in their current form.
Along those lines, the Rams' move from Los Angeles to St. Louis has killed what was once a natural regional rivalry with the San Francisco 49ers.
Joining the NFC North would make sense for the Rams. Chicago and Green Bay in particular would be bigger draws in St. Louis than San Francisco, Arizona or Seattle. Meanwhile, the 49ers, Cardinals and Seahawks would add a regional rival while reducing the miles they must travel each season, always a concern for Western teams.