1994 Minnesota Vikings season
|1994 Minnesota Vikings season|
|Head coach||Dennis Green|
|Home field||Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome|
|Division place||1st NFC Central|
|Playoff finish||Lost Wild Card|
1994 was the 34th year of season play for the Minnesota Vikings and the 75th regular season of the National Football League. The Vikings finished with a record of ten wins and six losses. For the third straight season in the Dennis Green era, the Vikings did not make it out of the Wild Card round, losing 35-18 to the rival Chicago Bears.
- 1 Offseason
- 2 Regular season
- 2.1 Schedule
- 2.2 Notable Moments
- 2.2.1 Week 1 @ Green Bay
- 2.2.2 Week 2 vs. Detroit
- 2.2.3 Week 3 @ Chicago
- 2.2.4 Week 4 vs. Miami
- 2.2.5 Week 5 @ Arizona
- 2.2.6 Week 6 @ New York Giants
- 2.2.7 Week 8 vs. Green Bay
- 2.2.8 Week 9 @ Tampa Bay
- 2.2.9 Week 10 vs. New Orleans
- 2.2.10 Week 11 @ New England
- 2.2.11 Week 12 vs. NY Jets
- 2.2.12 Week 13 vs. Tampa Bay
- 2.2.13 Week 14 vs. Chicago
- 2.2.14 Week 15 @ Buffalo
- 2.2.15 Week 16 @ Detroit
- 2.2.16 Week 17 vs. San Francisco
- 2.3 Standings
- 3 Postseason
- 4 Statistics
- 5 Personnel
- 6 Awards and honors
- 7 References
|1994 Minnesota Vikings Draft|
|Draft order||Player name||Position||College||Notes|
|1||18||18||Dewayne Washington||Defensive Back||North Carolina State||from Broncos[a]|
|19||19||Todd Steussie||Offensive Tackle||California|
|2||11||40||David Palmer||Wide Receiver||Alabama||from Browns via Eagles and Falcons[b]|
|16||45||Traded to the Atlanta Falcons[b]||Compensatory pick|
|23||52||Traded to the Los Angeles Raiders[c]|
|26||55||Fernando Smith||Defensive End||Jackson State||from Raiders[c]|
|3||23||88||Traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers[d]|
|4||16||119||Traded to the Houston Oilers[e]|
|22||125||Mike Wells||Defensive Tackle||Iowa||from Raiders[c]|
|5||3||134||Shelly Hammonds||Defensive Back||Penn State||from Redskins[e]|
|20||151||Traded to the Kansas City Chiefs[f]|
|6||18||179||Andrew Jordan||Tight End||Western Carolina||from Broncos[a]|
|19||180||Traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers[d]|
|7||17||211||Pete Bercich||Linebacker||Notre Dame|
- ^[a] Denver traded their 1st round selection (18th overall), 6th round selection (179th overall), and 1995 2nd round selection to Minnesota in exchange for OT Gary Zimmerman on August 23, 1993.
- ^[b] Atlanta traded a 2nd round selection (40th overall) and 1995 1st round selection to Minnesota in exchange for their 2nd round selection (45th overall) and DE Chris Doleman on April 24, 1994.
- ^[c] The Raiders traded their 2nd round selection (55th overall) and 4th round selection (125th overall) to Minnesota to move up 3 spot to the 52nd overall selection and draft LB James Folston.
- ^[d] Minnesota traded their 3rd round selection (88th overall) and 6th round selection (180th overall) to Pittsburgh for TE Adrian Cooper.
- ^[e] Minnesota traded their 4th round selection (119th overall) and 1995 3rd round selection (89th overall) to Houston for QB Warren Moon.
- ^[e] Washington traded a conditional 5th round selection (134th overall) to Minnesota in exchange for QB Rich Gannon on August 20, 1993.
- ^[f] Minnesota traded their 5th round selection (151st overall) to Kansas City for RB Barry Word.
- November 6, 1994 – Warren Moon threw for 420 yards in a game against the New Orleans Saints.
- November 20, 1994 – Warren Moon threw for 400 yards in a game against the New York Jets.
|1||September 4, 1994||at Green Bay Packers||L 16–10||Lambeau Field||
|2||September 11, 1994||Detroit Lions||W 10–3||Metrodome||
|3||September 18, 1994||at Chicago Bears||W 42–14||Soldier Field||
|4||September 25, 1994||Miami Dolphins||W 38–35||Metrodome||
|5||October 2, 1994||at Arizona Cardinals||L 17–7||Sun Devil Stadium||
|6||October 10, 1994||at New York Giants||W 27–10||Giants Stadium||
|8||October 20, 1994||Green Bay Packers||W 13–10 (OT)||Metrodome||
|9||October 30, 1994||at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||W 36–13||Tampa Stadium||
|10||November 6, 1994||New Orleans Saints||W 21–20||Metrodome||
|11||November 13, 1994||at New England Patriots||L 26–20 (OT)||Foxboro Stadium||
|12||November 20, 1994||New York Jets||L 31–21||Metrodome||
|13||November 27, 1994||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||L 20–17 (OT)||Metrodome||
|14||December 1, 1994||Chicago Bears||W 33–27 (OT)||Meetrodome||
|15||December 11, 1994||at Buffalo Bills||W 21–17||Rich Field||
|16||December 17, 1994||at Detroit Lions||L 41–19||Silverdome||
|17||December 26, 1994||San Francisco 49ers||W 21–14||Metrodme||
- Warren Moon's first game for the Vikings was a rough affair as he was intercepted three times and limited to just 166 passing yards. The Vikings' only touchdown in the 16–10 loss was a James Harris fumble recovery.
- Moon led the Vikings to their first win of the season in a 10–3 affair. He threw his first touchdown of the season and first since leaving the Oilers on a 30-yard pass to Qadry Ismail in the second quarter.
- Moon and the Vikings offense exploded at Soldier Field, putting up 464 combined yards, 212 of them on the ground with three scores in a 42–14 rout. Cris Carter caught a two-point conversion throw to go with nine catches for 86 yards.
- Dan Marino's comeback season almost became his biggest comeback win; the Vikings behind three Moon touchdowns to Cris Carter led 28–0, but Marino threw three touchdowns and by the fourth quarter had tied the game 28–28. The Vikings then finished it off 38–35, outscoring the Dolphins 10–7 in the fourth.
- The Vikings fell 17–7 to the previously-winless Cardinals despite 167 receiving yards from Cris Carter. Warren Moon was intercepted twice and the Cards rushed for 109 yards and a Larry Centers score.
Week 6 @ New York Giants
- The Vikings entered their bye week 4–2 after upending the Giants 27–10, scoring the game's final 17 points.
Week 8 vs. Green Bay
- In a rare Thursday night game, the Vikings limited the Packers to just 158 yards of offense yet needed overtime to win 13–10. Brett Favre completed six passes for just 32 yards and was replaced by Mark Brunell, who managed just 79 yards passing. Moon put up 50 passes with 31 completions but was intercepted twice.
- Fuad Reveiz booted five field goals as the Vikings crushed the Bucs 36–13, intercepting Trent Dilfer three times.
Week 10 vs. New Orleans
- Three touchdowns by Warren Moon – the last to Qadry Ismail following a 13-point fourth-quarter run by the Saints – were enough to upend New Orleans 21–20. The win came despite eleven Minnesota penalties for 90 yards.
Week 11 @ New England
- Just under two seasons after his team's playoff meltdown in Buffalo, Warren Moon again had to witness a multi-score collapse to an AFC East opponent. Moon unloaded a 65-yard score to Qadry Ismail and led three other scoring drives for a 20–0 lead before halftime, but following a Matt Bahr field goal at the end of the half Moon was stymied and the Vikings saw their lead collapse; tied 20–20 the game went to overtime and the Patriots never let the Vikings get possession of the ball as Kevin Turner caught the winning touchdown and the 26–20 Vikings loss.
- Minnesota hit the skids for the second week straight. Two touchdowns (one a Moon throw to Cris Carter) put the Vikings up 14–10 but from there Moon was intercepted four times and Boomer Esiason unloaded three consecutive touchdowns, offsetting 400 passing yards from Moon and a late Qadry Ismail score. It all ended a 31–21 Vikings loss; unknown to all it would be the final win that season for Esiason's team.
Week 13 vs. Tampa Bay
- Looking for only their third win of the season, the Bucs held off the Vikings for a 17–9 lead in the fourth until Warren Moon once again found Qadry Ismail; a two-point conversion throw to Cris Carter forced overtime tied 17–17, but the Bucs drove downfield for Michael Husted's winning field goal and the 20–17 loss, the third loss in a row and second in overtime in that span.
Week 14 vs. Chicago
- The Bears entered this rare Thursday night affair (broadcast on ESPN) at 8–4 with the Vikings 7–5 and the Lions and Packers both 6–6; the NFC Central that season was closing on a rare four-team playoff scenario out of one division, and the race got even tighter in a battle of Fuad Reveiz and Kevin Butler field goals; Chicago led 24–16 after Greg McMurtry's touchdown from Steve Walsh in the third, but Reveiz and Warren Moon grabbed a 27–24 lead in the fourth; Butler's 33-yard field goal forced overtime, and in the fifth quarter Moon unleashed a 65-yard touchdown to Cris Carter and the stunning 33–27 Vikings win.
- Following two straight bitter losses with the Oilers, Warren Moon got a measure of revenge with his first win at Buffalo. Moon led two scoring drives led by his touchdown to Terry Allen and a subsequent Fuad Reveiz field goal; Reveiz set a club season record with five field goals in the game. Linebacker Jack Del Rio picked off Jim Kelly via a one-handed catch. The Vikings finished off the win 21–17.
Week 16 @ Detroit
- The NFC Central race got even tighter as the Vikings were crushed 41–19 by the Lions and both teams were tied at 9–6 with the Bears. Barry Sanders erupted to 110 rushing yards and two touchdowns and Dave Krieg added two touchdown throws himself. John Randle was ejected in the fourth quarter for bumping an official after Krieg threw a touchdown pass to ex-Viking Anthony Carter for the final score.
Week 17 vs. San Francisco
- Monday Night Football wrapped up the regular season with the 49ers the NFC #1 seed and the Cowboys the #2. San Francisco played Steve Young into the second quarter and a touchdown to Jerry Rice, and from there played backups led by Elvis Grbac; the Vikings, needing the win in a three-way tie for the division, nonetheless started Sean Salisbury and he raced the Vikings to a 21–7 lead by the fourth quarter. Grbac's touchdown to Ed McCaffrey ended the 21–14 Vikings win; with the Bears losing to the Patriots, the Packers beating the Bucs, and the Lions losing to the Dolphins, Minnesota had the NFC Central crown.
|(3) Minnesota Vikings||10||6||0||.625||356||314||W1|
|(4) Green Bay Packers||9||7||0||.563||382||287||W3|
|(5) Detroit Lions||9||7||0||.563||357||342||L1|
|(6) Chicago Bears||9||7||0||.563||271||307||L1|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||6||10||0||.375||251||351||L1|
NFC Wildcard Game
The Bears picked off Warren Moon twice while Steve Walsh threw two touchdowns, backs Raymont Harris and Lewis Tillman added rushing scores, and Kevin Miniefield ran back a Vikings fumble for a touchdown.
|Passing Yards||Warren Moon||4,264|
|Passing Touchdowns||Warren Moon||18|
|Rushing Yards||Terry Allen||1,031|
|Rushing Touchdowns||Terry Allen||8|
|Receptions||Cris Carter||122 *|
|Receiving Yards||Cris Carter||1,256|
|Receiving Touchdowns||Cris Carter||7|
|Kickoff Return Yards||Qadry Ismail||807|
|Punt Return Yards||David Palmer||193|
|Tackles||Jack Del Rio||128|
|Forced Fumbles||John Randle||3|
- Vikings single season record (tie).
|Category||Total yards||Yards per game||NFL rank
(out of 28)
|Passing Offense||4,324 Yards||270.2 YPG||3rd|
|Rushing Offense||1,524 Yards||95.2 YPG||20th|
|Total Offense||5,848 Yards||365.5 YPG||3rd|
|Passing Defense||3,652 Yards||228.2 YPG||21st|
|Rushing Defense||1,090 Yards||68.1 YPG||1st|
|Total Defense||4,742 Yards||296.4 YPG||5th|
|1994 Minnesota Vikings staff|
Special Teams Coaches
Strength and Conditioning
|1994 Minnesota Vikings final roster|
Awards and honors
- Cris Carter, Led NFL in receptions
- Cris Carter, All-Pro selection
- Cris Carter, Pro Bowl selection
- Warren Moon, Pro Bowl Selection 1994
- Warren Moon, NFL Leader, Passing Yards, (4,264)
- Cris Carter, 100 reception season (Carter finished the season with 122 receptions) 
- Warren Moon, 3rd 4,000 Yard Passing Season
- Warren Moon, 5th 400 Yard Passing Game (November 6)
- Warren Moon, 6th 400 Yard Passing Game (November 20)