Minnesota Vikings: Top 20 games in franchise history
By Dan Zinski
Sep 21, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; A Minnesota Vikings helmet on the field before a game against the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
5. Vikings beat Rams in 1976 NFC title game
Playoff games are one of the biggest stages in the NFL and fans took notice of the NFC Championship game on 12/26/1976 on a 19 degree day between the Minnesota Vikings and the St. Louis Rams. It was the third time in four years that the Vikings were conference championship game and they had a lot of momentum going in.
Speaking of momentum, there was one play in the second quarter of this game which seemed to turn the tides in favor of Minnesota.
Rams kicker Pat Dempsey was attempting a 17 yard field goal, but Minnesota Vikings special teams ace Nate Allen got his hand on the ball and blocked it. Bobby Bryant scooped up the ball for Minnesota and returned it 90 yards for a touchdown.
This was the kind of play that Vikings needed. Things didn’t go their way through much of the game, with quarterback Fran Tarkenton struggling to secure the ball for Minnesota, throwing an interception and losing a fumble while only accumulating 143 passing yards. But the purple’s running back Chuck Foreman was on point, as he carried the ball 15 time for 115 yards and touchdown to go along with five catches for 81 yards.
The game was sealed when Minnesota Vikings defensive back Bobby Bryant snagged a Pat Haden pass for his second interception of the day on a big fourth down play near the end of the contest.
This game showcased Bobby Bryant, was playing lights-out football on a day when many other players seemed to be struggling on the cold and windy day. His three big plays helped ensure that the Minnesota Vikings would reach the Super Bowl.