Vikings all-time tournament: 1973 holds off upset-hungry 1987
The 1987 Minnesota Vikings shocked the football world with upset wins over New Orleans and San Francisco in the postseason.
They almost did it again in the opening round of the Vikings all-time tournament.
Behind a late interception return for a touchdown from linebacker Jeff Siemon, the stellar fourth-seeded 1973 defense held off No. 13 1987 by a score of 20-17.
The ’73 Vikings didn’t claim their first lead until second-string running back Oscar Reed found the end zone on a 24-yard scamper for a 13-10 advantage.
It looked like ’73 Minnesota was in trouble with two minutes to play in the game. Up 13-10, running back Chuck Foreman fumbled the ball away at the ’87 19-yard line to give them a chance to tie or take the lead.
But two plays later, Siemon picked off a pass from quarterback Wade Wilson and took it 20 yards to the house for a 20-10 lead.
The ’87 Vikings rallied for a late touchdown with 28 seconds left but couldn’t recover the onside kick. ’73 Minnesota escapes to the next round.
The ’73 Vikings had a big advantage in the running game, averaging 4.3 yards per carry compared to ’87 Minnesota’s 3.5.
Foreman rushed 17 times for 69 yards, Reed added 49 yards on 10 carries and Tarkenton scrambled four times for 18 yards.
Wilson was held to 155 yards, two touchdowns and one interception on 11-of-23 passing. He was also sacked three times — twice by Siemon and once by All-Pro Jim Marshall.
Tarkenton wasn’t much better than Wilson through the air, completing 12 of 21 attempts for 182 yards and no scores or picks.
The fourth-seeded ’73 Vikings move on to face ’09 Minnesota in the quarterfinals. Brett Favre and the ’09 Vikings routed the ’92 squad 41-14 in the opening round.
|73 MIN||11:36||FG||Fred Cox 20 yds.||0-3|
|87 MIN||1:49||FG||Chuck Nelson 29 yds.||3-3|
|87 MIN||9:22||TD||Steve Jordan 2 yd. pass from Wilson (Nelson kick)||10-3|
|73 MIN||1:01||FG||Fred Cox 49 yds.||10-6|
|73 MIN||7:00||TD||Oscar Reed 24 yd. run (Cox kick)||10-13|
|73 MIN||1:22||TD||20 yd interception return (Cox kick)||10-20|
|87 MIN||0:28||TD||Hassan Jones 29 yd. pass from Wilson (Nelson kick)||17-20|
|’87 Wade Wilson||11||23||155||2||1|
|’87 Doug Martin||8||0||0|
|’87 Joey Browner||6||1||0|