1968 Minnesota Vikings season

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1968 Minnesota Vikings season
Head coach Bud Grant
General manager Jim Finks
Home field Metropolitan Stadium
Results
Record 8–6
Division place 1st NFL Central
Playoff finish Lost Western Conference Championship Game (Colts) 14–24
Lost NFL Playoff Bowl (vs. Cowboys) 13–17

The 1968 season was the Minnesota Vikings' eighth in the National Football League. Under head coach Bud Grant, the Vikings won the NFL Central division title with an 8–6 record, and qualified for the postseason for the first time in franchise history. The Vikings' first trip to the playoffs saw them suffer a 24–14 loss in the Western Conference Championship Game to the eventual NFL champion and Super Bowl runner-up Baltimore Colts at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium. In the Playoff Bowl two weeks later, they again lost to the Dallas Cowboys 17–13.

Offseason

1968 Draft

Hall of Famer
1968 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Notes
Round Choice Overall
1 1 1 Ron Yary Offensive tackle USC from Giants[a]
7 7 Traded to the New Orleans Saints[b]
2 6 33 Charlie West Defensive back Texas-El Paso
3 6 61 Traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers[c]
21 76 Mike McGill Linebacker Notre Dame from Cowboys[d]
4 6 89 Mike Freeman Defensive back Fresno State
5 6 117 Traded to the Washington Redskins[e]
6 6 144 Bob Goodridge Wide receiver Vanderbilt
7 2 167 Oscar Reed Wide receiver Colorado State from Falcons[f]
6 171 Lenny Snow Running back Georgia Tech
8 6 198 Hank Urbanowicz Defensive tackle Miami
9 6 225 Mike Donohue Tight end San Francisco
10 6 250 Tom Sakal Defensive back Minnesota
11 6 279 Bill Haas Wide receiver Nebraska-Omaha
12 6 308 Howie Small Center Rhode Island
13 6 333 Dick Wherry Wide receiver Northern State
14 6 360 Don Evans Offensive tackle Arkansas-Pine Bluff
15 6 387 Jim Haynie Quarterback West Chester
16 6 414 Lary Kuharich Defensive back Boston College
17 6 441 Bob Lee Quarterback Pacific
10 445 Bill Hull Guard Tennessee Tech from Lions[g]
^[a] The New York Giants traded their 1st-round selection (1st overall), 1967 1st-round selection (2nd overall), 1967 2nd-round selection (28th overall), and 1969 2nd-round selection (39th overall) to Minnesota for QB Fran Tarkenton.
^[b] Minnesota traded their 1st-round selection (7th overall) and their 1969 1st-round selection (17th overall) to New Orleans for QB Gary Cuozzo.
^[c] Minnesota traded their 3rd-round selection (61st overall) to PIttsburgh for CB Brady Keys.
^[d] Dallas traded their 3rd-round selection (76th overall) to Minnesota for WR Lance Rentzel.
^[e] Minnesota traded their 5th-round selection (117th overall) to Washington for OL Bob Breitenstein.
^[f] Atlanta traded their 7th-round selection (167th overall) to Minnesota for QB Ron Vander Kelen.
^[g] Detroit traded their 17th-round selection (445th overall) to Minnesota for their 1969 16th-round selection (407th overall).

Roster

1968 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
Active, Inactive, Practice squad

Preseason

Game Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance [1]
1 August 10 Kansas City Chiefs (AFL) L 10–13 0–1 Metropolitan Stadium 46,228
2 August 17 at Denver Broncos (AFL) W 39–16 1–1 University of Denver Stadium 20,901
3 August 24 Philadelphia Eagles W 52–10 2–1 Metropolitan Stadium 41,229
4 September 1 at St. Louis Cardinals L 28–31 2–2 Busch Memorial Stadium 25,233
5 September 6 New Orleans Saints W 20–17 3–2 State Fair Stadium (Shreveport, LA) 23,000

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 September 14 Atlanta Falcons W 47–7 1–0 Metropolitan Stadium 45,563
2 September 22 at Green Bay Packers W 26–13 2–0 Milwaukee County Stadium 49,346
3 September 29 Chicago Bears L 17–27 2–1 Metropolitan Stadium 47,644
4 October 6 Detroit Lions W 24–10 3–1 Metropolitan Stadium 44,289
5 October 13 at New Orleans Saints L 17–20 3–2 Tulane Stadium 71,105
6 October 20 Dallas Cowboys L 7–20 3–3 Metropolitan Stadium 47,644
7 October 27 at Chicago Bears L 24–26 3–4 Wrigley Field 46,562
8 November 3 Washington Redskins W 27–14 4–4 Metropolitan Stadium 47,644
9 November 10 Green Bay Packers W 14–10 5–4 Metropolitan Stadium 47,644
10 November 17 at Detroit Lions W 13–6 6–4 Tiger Stadium 48,654
11 November 24 at Baltimore Colts L 9–21 6–5 Memorial Stadium 60,238
12 December 1 Los Angeles Rams L 3–31 6–6 Metropolitan Stadium 47,644
13 December 8 at San Francisco 49ers W 30–20 7–6 Kezar Stadium 29,049
14 December 15 at Philadelphia Eagles W 24–17 8–6 Franklin Field 54,530

Note: The October 6 game against Detroit was originally scheduled to be played in Detroit. The game was switched with the November 17 game due to game 4 of the World Series.

Standings

NFL Central
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
Minnesota Vikings 8 6 0 .571 4–2 6–4 282 242 W2
Chicago Bears 7 7 0 .500 3–3 5–5 250 333 L1
Green Bay Packers 6 7 1 .462 1–4–1 2–7–1 281 227 W1
Detroit Lions 4 8 2 .333 3–2–1 4–5–1 207 241 L1

Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.

Playoffs

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
Conference December 22 at Baltimore Colts L 14–24 0–1 Memorial Stadium 60,238
Playoff Bowl January 5 Dallas Cowboys L 13–17 0–2 Miami Orange Bowl 22,961

Statistics

Team leaders

Category Player(s) Value
Passing yards Joe Kapp 1,695
Passing touchdowns Joe Kapp 10
Rushing yards Bill Brown 805
Rushing touchdowns Bill Brown 11
Receiving yards Gene Washington 756
Receiving touchdowns Gene Washington 6
Points Fred Cox 88
Kickoff return yards Charlie West 576
Punt return yards Charlie West 201
Interceptions Paul Krause 7

League rankings

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 16)
Passing offense 1,685 120.4 15th
Rushing offense 1,921 137.2 6th
Total offense 3,606 257.6 14th
Passing defense 1,855 132.5 3rd
Rushing defense 1,903 135.9 11th
Total defense 3,758 268.4 5th

External links

  • 1968 Minnesota Vikings at Pro-Football-Reference.com
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