3. Fran Tarkenton
- Position: Quarterback
- Years with Vikings: 1961-66 and 1972-78
- Years in the NFL: 1961-1978
- Other teams associated with: New York Giants
- Enshrinement year: 1986
When “The Mad Scrambler” left Georgia, he entered both the NFL Draft and the AFL Draft. He was selected in both drafts but chose to sign with the Minnesota Vikings who picked him in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft instead of the Boston Patriots who made him a 5th round pick in the AFL Draft.
Fran Tarkenton made a wise choice, as he would go on to have a very successful NFL career. He was the NFL Most Valuable Player in 1975 and was named to the Pro Bowl 9 times. When talking about the best quarterback in Minnesota Vikings history, his name is should be at the top of the list.
There was a gap in time when Minnesota traded the scrambling passer to the Giants, but they were able to get him back in trade 5 seasons later. However, he still remains the Vikings franchise leader in passing yards, passing touchdowns, completions, pass attempts, and interception percentage.
Fran Tarkenton had his #10 jersey retired by the Minnesota Vikings and joined the team’s Ring of Honor. He went on to author several books, including biographies self-help, and motivational works after his 18 seasons playing professional football.