The Minnesota Vikings franchise was started early on in 1961 where they played in the National Football League and have been playing in the League ever since. In the NFL they currently play in the NFC North, and play all of their home games at the Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, which is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. With their stadium being old and the fans and team wanting a new stadium, there was a bill passed in May of 2012 where a new stadium will be built; it is set to open for the 2016 season. The team is actually headquartered at Winter Part, in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. The team colors are Purple, Gold, and White, making the Vikings stand out amongst the other teams. In 2007, the Vikings introduced Viktor the Viking to their fans; he is a muscular, blond-haired Viking with a mean attitude.
Vikings Brief Team History
With the Vikings entering professional football in 1961, it would mark a golden age for the team. Ever since they started playing, the Vikings have had one of the highest winning percentages in the NFL; 421 – 351 – 9. The Vikings were not initially going to join the NFL, but instead the AFL, but luckily the men in charge decided against the offer and instead took the 14th franchise spot in the NFL. Their first ten seasons in the NFL were not all that great, where they only got one winning season record. They were able to dominate during the 1969 season, where they went on to win the NFL championship that year. Throughout the early 1970’s they were still able to maintain their superiority on the field, mostly thanks to their defensive line nicknamed “The Purple People Eaters.” They managed to play in three Super Bowls during these great seasons.
The 1980’s went by with little advancements on behalf of the Vikings, where they were able to make five different playoff appearances, where two of them resulted in winning the Division championship. During the 1998 season, the Viking offense was led by quarterback Randall Cunningham, and a few others that simply made the team excellent. During that season the Vikings went 15 – 1, and managed to get to the Conference championship, where they lost in overtime to the Atlanta Falcons; marking the first NFL team with a 15 – 1 record to not reach the Super Bowl. There have been a few disappointing seasons and other seasons where they have played great, and all the fans are hoping that the 2012 season will be a great one.
Notable Vikings Figures
These are some influential players that have made the Vikings into a great team, both in the past and the present.
Past Vikings Figures
“The Purple People Eaters” was the nickname that was given to a select few on the defensive lineup of the Vikings during the 1969 to 1971 seasons. The lineup consisted of Alan Page, Carl Eller, Jim Marshall, and Gary Larsen. They helped the Vikings get their NFL championship win in 1969, and continued to dominate the other teams during the next two seasons.
John Randle played for the Vikings from 1990 until 2000. During his time with the Vikings, he managed to prove just how good he was at defending, especially when it came to sacking the quarterback; he ended his career with 137.5 total sacks. His great performance during his time there got him named one of the 50 Greatest Vikings.
Fran Tarkenton was a Viking quarterback from 1961 – 1966 and then again from 1972 – 1978. His career as a quarterback led him to receive such honors as winning the 1975 NFL Offensive Player of the Year and NFL MVP. He also set various team records, such as Career Passing Yards Leader with 33,098 yards and Passing Touchdowns Leader with 239.
Present Vikings Figures
Adrian Peterson has been a running back for the Vikings since 2007. He has performed at a very high level, being able to get over 1,000 rushing yards for every season except in 2011 where he was unable to play every game of the season. He is also known to help the quarterback when needed by taking a pass.
Percy Harvin is a wide receiver and has been playing with the Vikings since 2009. With his first three seasons being more about gaining experience, it certainly is paying off for him during the 2012 season with all of the yards he’s gained through his receptions; also through rushing. Tight end Kyle Rudolph should also be mentioned as he, even with his few yards and playing time, has been able to make some big strides for the team’s success.
Corner back Antoine Winfield and Outside Linebacker Chad Greenway are doing a great job at the defensive line. Greenway is doing a great job at the front of the defense, holding back the runners and even sometimes getting to the QB. Winfield is the man in back, being able to guard the receivers, and versatile enough to get interceptions.
It is no wonder the Vikings are a great NFL team, they have a well-rounded team that can do well offensively as well as defensively.
Present Team Personnel
The majority owner of the Minnesota Vikings is Zygi Wilf; who purchased the team from Red McCombs in 2005 along with five other partners. His younger brother, Mark Wilf is the current president of the team. The current head coach of the Vikings is Leslie Frazier and has been getting the Vikings back into shape and dominating on the playing field since 2011. The way he is able to make the defense work so well at stopping the opponents, while the offense gets the winning scores is impressive.