Minnesota was granted an NFL franchise at the
league owners meetings in Miami on January
28, 1960. The founding group consisted of Max
Winter, E. William Boyer, H.P Skoglund, Ole
Haugsrud, and Bernard H. Ridder, Jr. In late
summer 1960, former Los Angeles Rams Public
Relations Director Bert Rose was named the
teams first General Manager. Rose
recommended Vikings as the team name because it
represented both an aggressive person with the
will to win and the Nordic tradition in the
northern Midwest. Norm Van Brocklin was selected
as the first head coach.
On December 27, 1960, RB Tommy Mason of Tulane
was taken with the first overall choice and the
first-ever draft pick utilized by the Vikings.
Also selected that year were QB Fran Tarkenton
(3rd round) and DB Ed Sharockman (5th round).
Following the 1960 season, the Vikings were
allowed to select three players from the roster
of each team after each team was allowed to
protect 30 of their 38 players. Among the players
selected were OL Grady Alderman (Detroit) and RB
Hugh McElhenny (San Francisco).
On April 12, 1961, the Vikings were assigned
to the Western Conference, which at the time also
included Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit, Green Bay,
Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
In the first game in franchise history, the
Vikings lost to the Dallas Cowboys 38-13 in a
preseason game in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on
August 5, 1961. Their first home game was a
preseason match-up against the Los Angeles Rams
on September 10, 1961, at Metropolitan Stadium;
they lost 21-17.
The Vikings played their first regular season
game on September 17, 1961. Kicker Mike Mercer
scored the first points in team history with a
12-yard field goal, and Bob Schnelker scored the
teams first touchdown on a 14-yard pass
from Fran Tarkenton. Tarkenton ultimately threw
four touchdown passes and ran for another as he
led the Vikings to a 37-13 victory over the
The Vikings' first winning season came in
1964, when they finished with a record of 8-5-1
and tied for second in the conference behind
On December 2, 1966, Minnesota, Chicago,
Detroit, and Green Bay were chosen to make up the
newly-formed Central Division of the Western
Conference of the NFL.
In 1967, Bud Grant, a Minnesotan who had been
leading the Canadian Football Leagues
Winnipeg Blue Bombers to glory, arrived in the
Twin Cities and turned the struggling Vikings
into an instant winner. On December 15, 1968, the
Vikings defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 24- 17
at Franklin Field then retired to the dressing
room to listen to the Chicago-Green Bay game on
the radio. Minnesota needed the Bears to lose to
clinch the Vikings first Division title.
Chicago tried to rally but eventually fell 28-17.
On December 22, 1968, in the first playoff game
in franchise history, the Colts defeated the
Vikings, 24-14, in the Western Conference
Championship Game at Baltimores Memorial
In 1969, the Vikings secured a 122
record. On January 4, 1970, they defeated the
Cleveland Browns 277 to become the first
modern NFL expansion team to win an NFL
Championship Game. On January 11, 1970, the
Vikings lost to Kansas City 23-7 in Super Bowl
On December 20, 1981, the Vikings hosted the
Chiefs in Minnesotas final game at
Metropolitan Stadium. The Vikings lost, 10-6.
They played their first game at the Metrodome in
a preseason matchup against Seattle on August 21,
1982. Minnesota prevailed, 7-3. The first regular
season game in the Metrodome was the 1982 opener
on September 12, when the Vikings defeated Tampa
On July 3, 1998, the Minnesota Vikings' owners
voted unanimously to accept the bid of Texas
businessman B.J. Red McCombs to
purchase the Vikings. On July 28, 1998, the NFL
owners unanimously approved Red McCombs
purchase of the Vikings, finalizing the change of
ownership from the 10 previous owners to sole
ownership by McCombs.
An investment group led by brothers Zygmunt
and Mark Wilf were unanimously approved as the
new owners of the Vikings by their fellow NFL
owners on May 25, 2005. The Wilfs, owners of a
real estate development company in New Jersey,
took ownership in mid-June from former owner Red
McCombs, and continue to own the team today.
|Super Bowls Won
0 out of 4 appearances
All-Time Passing Leader
Fran Tarkenton (33,098 yards)
All-Time Rushing Leader
Adrian Peterson (10,190 yards)
All-Time Receiving Leader
Cris Carter (12,383 yards)
All-Time Winningest Coach
Bud Grant (168-108-5)
The official website of the
Minnesota Vikings is www.vikings.com.
Pro-Football Reference http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/min/
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