1997 Minnesota Vikings season

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1997 Minnesota Vikings season
Head coach Dennis Green
Home field Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
Results
Record 9–7
Division place 4th NFC Central
Playoff finish Won NFC Wild Card Playoff (at Giants) 23–22
Lost NFC Divisional Playoff (at 49ers) 22–38

The 1997 season was the Minnesota Vikings' 37th in the National Football League and their sixth under head coach Dennis Green. The team finished with a 9–7 record and qualified for a wild card berth in the playoffs. In the wild card round against the New York Giants, the Vikings came back from a 22–13 deficit with 90 seconds to play to win 23–22, their first playoff victory since 1988. In the divisional round, the Vikings were defeated 38–22 by the San Francisco 49ers.

Vikings defensive tackle John Randle led the league in sacks with 15.5. Wide receiver Cris Carter's 13 touchdown receptions also were most in the league.

Before the season, the Vikings acquired Randall Cunningham after a year out of the game, a move that reunited Cunningham with his former Philadelphia Eagles teammate Cris Carter.

Offseason[edit]

1997 Draft[edit]

1997 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Notes
Round Choice Overall
1 20 20 Dwayne Rudd Linebacker Alabama
2 19 49 Torrian Gray Safety Virginia Tech
3 18 78 Stalin Colinet Defensive end Boston College
4 17 113 Antonio Banks Defensive back Virginia Tech
5 21 151 Tony Williams Defensive tackle Memphis
6 20 183 Robert Tate Wide receiver Cincinnati
7 19 220 Artie Ulmer Linebacker Valdosta State
34 235 Matthew Hatchette Wide receiver Langston Compensatory pick

Undrafted free agents[edit]

1997 Undrafted Free Agents of note
Player Position College
Todd Bouman Quarterback St. Cloud State
Duane Butler Defensive Back Illinois State

Preseason[edit]

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance [1] Notes
1 July 26 Seattle Seahawks W 28-26 1-0 Fawcett Stadium (Canton, OH) 23,846 Hall of Fame Game
2 August 2 St. Louis Rams W 26-6 2-0 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 36,971
3 August 8 at Buffalo Bills L 3-19 2-1 Rich Stadium 32,559
4 August 16 at Cincinnati Bengals L 13-37 2-2 Cinergy Field 44,316
5 August 22 San Diego Chargers W 28-22 3-2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 44,300

Regular season[edit]

Schedule[edit]

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 August 31 at Buffalo Bills W 34–13 1–0 Rich Stadium 79,139
2 September 7 at Chicago Bears W 27–24 2–0 Soldier Field 59,263
3 September 14 Tampa Bay Buccaneers L 28–14 2–1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 63,697
4 September 21 at Green Bay Packers L 38–32 2–2 Lambeau Field 60,115
5 September 28 Philadelphia Eagles W 28–19 3–2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 55,149
6 October 5 at Arizona Cardinals W 20–19 4–2 Sun Devil Stadium 45,550
7 October 12 Carolina Panthers W 21–14 5–2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 62,625
8 Bye
9 October 26 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 10–6 6–2 Houlihan's Stadium 66,815
10 November 2 New England Patriots W 23–18 7–2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 62,917
11 November 9 Chicago Bears W 29–22 8–2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 63,443
12 November 16 at Detroit Lions L 38–15 8–3 Silverdome 68,910
13 November 23 at New York Jets L 23–21 8–4 Giants Stadium 70,131
14 December 1 Green Bay Packers L 27–11 8–5 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 64,001
15 December 7 at San Francisco 49ers L 28–17 8–6 3Com Park 55,761
16 December 14 Detroit Lions L 14–13 8–7 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 60,982
17 December 21 Indianapolis Colts W 39–28 9–7 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 54,107

Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text.

Standings[edit]

NFC Central
W L T PCT PF PA STK
(2) Green Bay Packers 13 3 0 .813 422 282 W5
(4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers 10 6 0 .625 299 263 W1
(5) Detroit Lions 9 7 0 .563 379 306 W2
(6) Minnesota Vikings 9 7 0 .563 354 359 W1
Chicago Bears 4 12 0 .250 263 421 L1

Postseason[edit]

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
Wildcard December 27 at New York Giants W 23–22 1–0 Giants Stadium 77,497
Division January 3 at San Francisco 49ers L 38–22 1–1 3Com Park 65,018

Statistics[edit]

Team leaders[edit]

Category Player(s) Value
Passing yards Brad Johnson 3,036
Passing touchdowns Brad Johnson 20
Rushing yards Robert Smith 1,266
Rushing touchdowns Robert Smith 6
Receiving yards Jake Reed 1,138
Receiving touchdowns Cris Carter 13
Points Cris Carter 84
Kickoff return yards David Palmer 711
Punt return yards David Palmer 444
Tackles Robert Griffith 114
Sacks John Randle 15.5
Interceptions Dewayne Washington 4
Forced fumbles Derrick Alexander 3

League rankings[edit]

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 30)
Passing offense 3,313 207.1 14th
Rushing offense 2,041 127.6 6th
Total offense 5,354 334.6 8th
Passing defense 3,704 231.5 29th
Rushing defense 1,983 123.9 23rd
Total defense 5,687 355.4 29th

Personnel[edit]

Staff[edit]

colspan="7" style="background: #4F2683;color:white;border:2px solid
  1. FFFFFF;text-align:center"|1997 Minnesota Vikings staff
Front Office
  • Chairman of the Board – John Skoglund
  • President/Chief Executive Officer – Roger Headrick

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches

 

Defensive Coaches

  • Defensive Coordinator – Foge Fazio
  • Defensive Line – John Levra
  • Inside Linebackers – Tom Olivadotti
  • Outside Linebackers – Trent Walters
  • Defensive Backs – Richard Solomon

Special Teams Coaches

Strength and Conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – Steve Wetzel
  • Assistant Strength and Conditioning – Jeff Friday

[1]

Final roster[edit]

1997 Minnesota Vikings final roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad



Rookies in italics
52 Active, 9 Inactive, 0 Practice squad

References[edit]

  1. ^ 2009 Minnesota Vikings Media Guide. p. 251. Retrieved 2010-02-26.