Who Are The Greatest Minnesota Vikings Players Of All Time?
The Minnesota Vikings have had remarkable history given the franchise has never had a large lot of postseason success since its inception. The club from the Twin Cities, which had four Super Bowl trips in an eight-year stretch from 1969-76, has yet to lift a Lombardi Trophy.
The Vikings were 1969 NFL champions, but by then the league acknowledged titleholder would be the Super Bowl winner as the team was hammered by the Kansas City Chiefs, 23-7, in Super Bowl IV. There would be subsequent defeats to the Dolphins, Steelers, and Raiders, respectively. And the Purple Gang, despite its share of exceptional players, hasn’t been back to the “Big Game” since.
But this is also an operation that has put a fantastic product on the field on a reasonably constant basis. So let’s begin the ranking for the 5 best players in Vikings franchise history.
5. John Raddle
John Randle, one of the more passionate players in the league during his era, made NFL Films even more entertaining with some of his bluster. He also made life exceedingly unpleasant for the quarterbacks he faced.
In 14 NFL seasons with the Vikings and then the Seahawks, he recorded 137.5 career sacks and 29 forced fumbles. He earned double-digit sack totals eight times in 11 seasons with the Purple Gang.
From 1993-98, he was named to both Pro Bowl and also garnered All-Pro honors in each of those six seasons. He spent his final three years with Seattle, piling up 23.5 sacks, and was named to the Pro Bowl in 2001. The relentless defense, a graduate of Texas A&M-Kingsville, was a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2010.
4. Alan Page
Alan Page was a great defensive tackle who was taken as 15th overall ranking by the Vikings in the 1967 draft. Page had an unusual style of play, lined up at right defensive tackle a location where most would place their right hand on the ground, but instead, he put his left.
The unorthodox technique worked for him as he was a menace for opposing teams in his 11 seasons with the Vikings. Page was such a star with the Vikings that was selected as the NFL MVP for the 1971 season. He also was a part of all four of the Vikings teams that made an appearance in the Super Bowl.
After retiring, Page was obtained his law degree, subsequently being a component of the Minnesota Supreme Court.
3. Adrian Peterson
Adrian Peterson still isn’t ready to retire. The veteran running back spent much of the 2021 NFL summer and most of the season as a free agent but has returned to play in his 15th NFL season. He still running the rock only nowadays, except he’s doing it for the Washington Football Team. But back in 2007, the University of Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson was the seventh overall selection in the draft that year by the Minnesota Vikings.
It’s easy to say he had definitely made quite the impact during his first year when he ran for 1,341 yards and 12 touchdowns in 14 outings. That year against the then-San Diego Chargers in the Metrodome, he put up an NFL record 295 yards on the ground.
Adrian Peterson played 10 seasons for the Minnesota Vikings. He is the franchise’s all-time leading rusher with 11,747 yards and 102 touchdowns. Peterson is fifth in NFL history with 14,216 yards running and is seeking a spot in the league’s top four.
2. Randy Moss
Coming out of Marshall there were some reputation problems with Randy Moss, and even if some did lay a hand over his playing career, he still remains the second-best Viking ever. As a rookie in 1998, it didn’t take long for everyone to recognize how unique a talent Moss is. He appeared in 16 games, catching 69 receptions for 1,313 yards and 17 touchdowns. In 1998 the Vikings had a team capable of winning the Super Bowl but lost in the NFC Championship Game. The offense was excellent in the early stages of Moss’s stint with the squad. If Minnesota had won a Super Bowl, he would be the top player in team history.
Moss would play for the Raiders, Patriots, Titans, Vikings, and finally the 49ers during his career. With New England in 2007, he set a league record with 23 touchdown catches. Moss just has one more career touchdown reception than fellow Hall of Famer Jerry Rice (197). (156). Those early days in Minnesota were very unforgettable.
1. Fran Tarkenton
The Vikings selected Fran Tarkenton in the third round of the 1961 draft to serve as their franchise’s first quarterback. In his first season with the Vikings, he didn’t have much success in terms of team victories, and he left for the New York Giants following the 1966 season.He departed the Giants before the 1971 season to rejoin the Vikings. In 1975, Tarkenton led the Vikings to a 12-2 record while passing for 2,994 yards and 25 touchdowns. For his achievements, he was selected offensive player of the year and MVP. Tarkenton’s number 10 was retired by the Vikings.
The former Georgia Bulldog was drafted third overall by the expansion Minnesota Vikings in 1961, and he threw 113 touchdown passes and 95 interceptions in his debut season with the organization. The Pro Football Hall of Famer holds the team records for passing yards (33,098) and touchdown passes thrown (239).
Despite the fact that he last played in 1978, Tarkenton still ranks 10th in NFL history with 342 touchdown passes and 12th with 47,003 yards passing. With his scrambling, he irritated opponents, yet he consistently made the Vikings a force to be reckoned with.