Minnesota Vikings

Recent Articles

Vikings in bold move sign QB Freeman

Third-year quarterback Christian Ponder will no longer be treated with kid gloves. Last year Joe Webb was his backup; this year the Vikings in the off season signed veteran QB Matt Cassel as his backup. Last week, in a surprise move, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers released starting quarterback Josh Freeman, and Sunday the Vikings signed the former Pro Bowl quarterback to a one-year $2 million deal. Freeman last season threw for 4,065 yards and 27 touchdowns. This season, he and Tampa Bay Head Coach Greg Shiano were at odds. Continue Reading →

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London Vikings game a ‘hook’ to plug state business, tourism

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Meet Minneapolis Executive Director Melvin Tennant was a member of the 24-person delegation that traveled to London for the September 29 Minnesota-Pittsburgh football game. But he was there for more than watching the local NFL club play a regular-season contest. “I had the opportunity to represent Meet Minneapolis [the city’s convention and visitors’ bureau],” Tennant told the MSR last week after his return from the week-long trip to England. He added that the traveling party included both Minneapolis and St. Paul mayors; representatives from the convention and visitors bureaus of St. Continue Reading →

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More Vikings impressions

 

 

According to an inside source, I wouldn’t be too far off when I said to them that there were more Black workers than Black fans at Sunday’s Minnesota-Cleveland football game at the Metrodome. A three-year Black female stadium worker told the MSR that she estimates at least 70 percent of the game-day workforce is Black – her husband has worked at the Dome for eight years.  As a result it’s safe to say that maybe three to five percent of the 63,000-plus in attendance were Black. “I’m a diehard Vikings fan, and I was born and raised in Tampa, Florida,” says Sylvester Blue, who now lives in Dallas, Texas.  “I’ve been a fan since I was four years old, and I’m 48 now. I work hard all my life and for me to get a chance to come see them live and in person, that’s the ultimate for me.”

 

J.T. Jones, who was part of a traveling group from Atlanta, Ga. admitted that his group earlier talked about not seeing more Blacks at pro football games, whether in the Twin Cities or his hometown.  “We got a good price on tickets,” says Jones.  He added that a possible reason for the lack of Blacks at NFL games can be attributed to financial concerns.  “We can’t splurge as much as we want to.  We pick and choose what we splurge,” he explains.  “You look on TV and it never looks like there are Blacks at games.”

“I’m a big football fanatic.  I work hard to enjoy the things I love, and football is one of them. Continue Reading →

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Vikings’ latest loss comes at high cost — for the team and fans

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This reporter normally people watches at sporting events, and attending my first Minnesota Vikings game in this century Sunday, I caught more than two eyefuls: Nordic flag waving, horn wearing and other pagan-like rituals. One man wore an “I Bleed Purple” shirt, and a very obviously pregnant woman fed her unborn child by guzzling beer as she walked to her seat. Meanwhile, a row of knuckleheads stood pretty much the entire game and blocked my field vision — all except three wore Adrian Peterson jerseys, but mostly all were decked head to toe in purple. The only thing missing was a human or animal sacrifice — but I can’t be 100 percent certain that didn’t take place, especially after the home team’s third

straight defeat of the 2013 season. Before the game, I spent about an hour walking in the dome’s concourse in search of Black fans. Continue Reading →

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Tensions divide stadium partners

Vikings and MSFA at odds
 
Is there a future for reconciliation between two partners who thought they had the world at their fingertips just a year ago, when in August of 2012 it was like a love fest, as the Vikings (Wilfs) and the state of Minnesota (Minnesota Sports Facility Authority) both declared their love, trust, and respect for each other? What difference a year can make. The New Jersey court ruling against the Wilfs led Minnesota (State, Sports commission, City) to question the integrity of the Vikes owners, the Wilfs, by ordering a forensic audit and an analysis of the Vikings’ owners ability to pay their portion of the $975 million so-called “Peoples” stadium. People tend to forget that just a year ago, as required by the legislation of 2012, the Vikings delivered $50 million to the Sports Facility Authority, when the MSFA was extremely cash flush ($50 million from the Vikings, $24 million transferred from the now defunct ballpark authority). Everyone expected that by now the State of Minnesota would be reaping the millions of dollars in revenue expected to be coming in from electronic pull tabs (and later electronic bingo), isn’t happening. Continue Reading →

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“We didn’t know!” Really?

Everybody pretends ignorance or amnesia on Zygi’s dealings
 

Many intelligent, knowledgeable people purposefully said they were surprised by the 21-year-old court ruling against the Wilfs, owners of the Minnesota Vikings. Really? Why do they think we believe them (Star Tribune wrote of it in 2011)? They quietly believed the Wilfs would win. What they “won” is loss of credibility. Continue Reading →

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Canton calls for Cris Carter!

 

 

Last Friday I was in Mankato for the start of Minnesota Vikings training camp, as I have been now every year since 1978. The Vikings have held training camp in Mankato for 48 years. And for the third straight year, the Vikings will have a player inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. On August 3, John Randle, Chris Doleman and number 80 Cris Carter will join the 50th Anniversary class of Hall of Famers. During his career with the Vikings, which included eight Pro Bowls, Carter made so many great plays and stretched the field with his ability to make the spectacular plays routinely. Continue Reading →

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Stadium contract under negotiation — Civil Rights Dept. monitors contractor and worker inclusion

 

 

It appears the Minnesota Vikings will sign off in the next 30 days on the contract for monitoring hiring compliance on the construction of the Vikings’ stadium. It is rumored that Viking General Council Kevin Warren will handle the final say for the Vikings (Warren, a member of the Stadium Equity Review Panel, is the highest-ranking Black American business executive with an NFL team). The negotiations between Alex Tittle, equity director for the Sports Facility Authority overseeing the Vikings stadium construction, and the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights (MDCR) have been going on for at least two weeks, as of the writing of this column. Why are they being held in secret? The selection of the Minneapolis Departmentof Civil Rights (MDCR) to monitor hiring compliance raises troubling questions, which I assume the Authority’s and Vikings’ attorneys are examining. Continue Reading →

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Changing of the guard with the T-Wolves

 

 
Flip Saunders’ good calculations will replace David Kahn’s poor ones
 

Because of my November 7, 2012 column (“The smartest White team in the NBA: T-Wolves team return to the 1950s?”), we took heat from those who took exception with our prediction that there would be a “day of reckoning” (being fired) if David Kahn’s “smartest White team” strategy didn’t result in at least 45 wins (it was disastrous; they won only 31). As I wrote in that November 7 column: “Play the best players, whether all White, all Black or a combination. To have the best game possible, Commissioner Stern has insisted on ‘color blind’ drafting/signing. So why not the Timberwolves?” Thus, get the fans “the best players playing so their teams have the best chance to win. It is quite clear that owner Glenn Taylor is of the same mind set.”

My prediction was the fruit of my being a life-long sports analyst/journalist/fan with a deep sense of the game’s history. Continue Reading →

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People’s Stadium in trouble! — Can the funding really be found?

 

 

How does “the People’s Stadium” stand at this hour? Answer: wobbly, as we see from the fierce and personal debates within the Minnesota legislature regarding how to pay for the “People’s Stadium.”

Why the silence from the state’s two major newspapers? Their silence raises serious questions regarding their journalistic integrity. Fear of transparency? As I have stated unequivocally before, the financial plan to fund the People’s Stadium was ill conceived, rushed without fully vetting the details. Continue Reading →

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