The top 10 pass rushing duos in Minnesota Vikings history

(Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images) Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter
(Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images) Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter /
7 of 7
Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by James Flores/Getty Images) /

1: Alan Page and Carl Eller (1967 – 1978)

  • 12 seasons
  • 327 games

Even though quarterback sacks did not become an official statistic until 1982, after both Alan Page and Carl Eller retired from the NFL, there is no legitimate ranking without them. While it is a no brainer to include these two, every such ranking should include any combination of Page, Eller, and Jim Marshall as the top three pass-rushing duos. The fact Marshall is not included in this ranking is wrong—just as his omission from the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Eller joined the Minnesota Vikings as a first-round draft pick from the University of Minnesota. Page came along three years later as another first-round pick in 1967 from Notre Dame. Both players became instant starters with Eller at left defensive end and Page at right defensive tackle. Along with Marshall and Gary Larsen, they were known as the Purple People Eaters. This Fearsome Foursome played together on the same line for eight seasons and is a major reason for the Vikings four Super Bowl appearances.

In 1971, Page the NFL awarded Page as the league’s Most Valuable Player, becoming the first defensive player to win the honor.  Over his career, Page made the Pro Bowl nine straight years and was a First-Team All-Pro six times. His page from the Pro Football Hall of Fame credits him with 173 career sacks. He never missed a single game with the Vikings and started 215 of 218 games he played. In 1988, the Pro Football Hall of fame welcomed Page as an inductee.

Eller, like Page, was also extremely durable. In 15 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, he only missed one game. He started 201 of 209 games he played. He finished his career with six trips to the Pro Bowl and named First-Team All-Pro five times.  According to, Eller is the team leader with 130 sacks and the only player to record 15 sacks or more in multiple seasons.

Must Read. 5 best back-to-back seasons by a Vikings QB. light

With how easily players can move between teams in the NFL, it is unlikely there will be another duo as dominant as these two or any combination of the Purple People Eaters, who along with Larsen played together for 10 seasons.