1988 Minnesota Vikings season

The 1988 Minnesota Vikings season was the team's 28th year in the National Football League. The team won eleven games, and finished second to the Chicago Bears in the NFC Central division.

The Vikings had one of the best defenses in the NFL in 1988. The team allowed 4,091 total yards, 4.3 yards per play, and 243 first downs, all best in the league. The Vikings also had a league-best 53 takeaways.[1] Opposing quarterbacks had a league-worst 41.2 passer rating against the Vikings' defense, the lowest total of the 1980s and fifth all-time for the Super Bowl era.[2]

The Vikings made the postseason for the second consecutive time under coach Jerry Burns. They defeated the Los Angeles Rams in the Wildcard round, but the following week, the Vikings couldn't flick the switch this time, losing 34-9 to the rejuvenated San Francisco 49ers, who would go on to win their third Super Bowl. This was the last time the Vikings had won a playoff game until 1997.

1988 Minnesota Vikings season
Head coachJerry Burns
General managerMike Lynn
Home fieldMetrodome
Local radioWCCO
Results
Record11–5
Division place2nd NFC Central
Playoff finishWon NFC Wild Card Playoff (Rams) 28–17
Lost NFC Divisional Playoff (at 49ers) 9–34

Offseason

1988 Draft

= Hall of Famer
1988 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Notes
Round Choice Overall
1 19 19 Randall McDaniel Offensive Guard Arizona State
2 18 45 Traded to the Denver Broncos[a]
27 54 Brad Edwards Defensive Back South Carolina from Broncos[a]
3 16 71 Al Noga Defensive End Hawaii
4 15 97 Traded to the New England Patriots[b]
26 108 Todd Kalis Offensive Guard Arizona State from Broncos[a]
5 15 124 Darrell Fullington Defensive Back Miami
6 19 156 Traded to the Miami Dolphins[c]
27 164 Derrick White Defensive Back Oklahoma from Broncos[a]
7 18 183 Brad Beckman Tight End Nebraska-Omaha
8 17 210 Joe Cain Linebacker Oregon Tech
9 16 237 Paul McGowan Linebacker Florida State
10 15 264 Brian Habib Offensive Tackle Washington
11 19 296 Norman Floyd Safety South Carolina from Vikings[b] via Patriots[d]
12 18 323 Traded to the New York Giants[e]
^[a] Denver traded their 2nd round selection (54th overall), 4th round selection (108th overall), and 6th round selection (164th overall) to the Vikings to move up 9 spots to the 45th selection and draft Offensive Tackle Gerald Perry.
^[b] Minnesota traded their 4th round selection (97th overall) and 11th round selection (294th overall) to New England for QB Rich Gannon.
^[c] Minnesota traded their 6th round selection (156th overall) and 1989 10th round selection (275th overall) to Miami for OL Greg Koch.
^[d] Minnesota traded their 1989 9th round selection to New England for the 11th round selection (296th overall) that the Patriots received in the Gannon trade[b].
^[e] Minnesota traded their 12th round selection (323rd overall) to the Giants for C Chris Foote.

Supplemental Draft

Round Name Position College Notes
5 Ryan Bethea Wide Receiver South Carolina Resulted in forfeiture of 1989 5th round selection

Personnel

Staff

1988 Minnesota Vikings staff
Front office

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

  • Offensive Coordinator – Bob Schnelker
  • Receivers – Dick Rehbein
  • Offensive Assistant/Receivers – Jerry Brown
  • Running Backs – John Brunner
  • Tight Ends – Tom Batta
  • Offensive Line – John Michels
Defensive coaches

Special teams coaches

  • Special Teams – Tom Batta

[3]

Final roster

1988 Minnesota Vikings final roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad



Rookies in italics
49 Active, 2 Inactive, 0 Practice squad

Preseason

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance [1] Notes
1 August 7 New Orleans Saints L 20–23 0–1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 47,624
2 August 14 Chicago Bears W 28–21 1–1 Ullevi Stadium (Göteborg, Sweden) 33,115 Volvo American Football Classic
3 August 21 at Phoenix Cardinals W 19–16 (OT) 2–1 Sun Devil Stadium 45,429
4 August 26 Miami Dolphins W 24–17 3–1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 51,463

Regular season

1988 NFC Wild Card Game - Los Angeles Rams at Minnesota Vikings 1988-12-26 (ticket)
A ticket for the 1988 NFC Wildcard Game between the Vikings and the Rams.

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 September 4, 1988 at Buffalo Bills L 10–12 0–1 Rich Stadium 76,783
2 September 11, 1988 New England Patriots W 36–6 1–1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
55,545
3 September 18, 1988 at Chicago Bears W 31–7 2–1 Soldier Field 63,990
4 September 25, 1988 Philadelphia Eagles W 23–21 3–1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 56,012
5 October 2, 1988 at Miami Dolphins L 7–24 3–2 Joe Robbie Stadium 59,867
6 October 9, 1988 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 14–13 4–2 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 55,274
7 October 16, 1988 Green Bay Packers L 14–34 4–3 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 59,053
8 October 23, 1988 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 49–20 5–3 Tampa Stadium 48,020
9 October 30, 1988 at San Francisco 49ers L 21–24 5–4 Candlestick Park 60,738
10 November 6, 1988 Detroit Lions W 44–17 6–4 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 55,573
11 November 13, 1988 at Dallas Cowboys W 43–3 7–4 Texas Stadium 57,830
12 November 20, 1988 Indianapolis Colts W 12–3 8–4 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 58,342
13 November 24, 1988 at Detroit Lions W 23–0 9–4 Silverdome 46,379
14 December 4, 1988 New Orleans Saints W 45–3 10–4 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 61,215
15 December 11, 1988 at Green Bay Packers L 6–18 10–5 Lambeau Field 48,892
16 December 19, 1988 Chicago Bears W 28–27 11–5 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 62,067

Game summaries

1 234Total
• Vikings 17 0179 43
Cowboys 0 300 3

[4]

Standings

NFC Central
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
Chicago Bears(1) 12 4 0 .750 6–2 9–3 312 215 L1
Minnesota Vikings(4) 11 5 0 .688 6–2 9–3 406 233 W1
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5 11 0 .313 4–4 4–8 261 350 W1
Detroit Lions 4 12 0 .250 2–6 3–11 220 315 L2
Green Bay Packers 4 12 0 .250 2–6 3–9 240 313 W2

Playoffs

Schedule

Playoff round Date Opponent (seed) Result Record Venue Attendance
Wild Card December 26, 1988 Los Angeles Rams (5) W 28–17 1–0 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 57,666
Divisional January 1, 1989 San Francisco 49ers (2) L 9–34 1–1 Candlestick Park 61,848

Game summaries

NFC Divisional Playoffs: at (#2) San Francisco 49ers

Statistics

Team leaders

Category Player(s) Value
Passing Yards Wade Wilson 2,746
Passing Touchdowns Wade Wilson 15
Rushing Yards Darrin Nelson 380
Rushing Touchdowns Alfred Anderson 7
Receiving Yards Anthony Carter 1,225
Receiving Touchdowns Anthony Carter 6
Points Chuck Nelson 108
Kickoff Return Yards Darryl Harris 833
Punt Return Yards Leo Lewis 550 *
Tackles Jesse Solomon 124
Sacks Chris Doleman
Keith Millard
8.0
Interceptions Carl Lee 8
Forced Fumbles Henry Thomas 4

League rankings

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 28)
Passing Offense 3,789 Yards 236.8 YPG 4th
Rushing Offense 1,806 Yards 112.9 YPG 20th
Total Offense 5,595 Yards 349.7 YPG 7th
Passing Defense 2,489 Yards 155.6 YPG 2nd
Rushing Defense 1,602 Yards 100.1 YPG 5th
Total Defense 4,091 Yards 255.7 YPG 1st

References

  1. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com: 1988 NFL Opposition & Defensive Statistics
  2. ^ Cold Hard Football Facts: Shutdown! The greatest pass defenses in history
  3. ^ 2010 Minnesota Vikings Media Guide. p. 265. Archived from the original on 2010-12-24. Retrieved February 18, 2011.
  4. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2014-Jan-20.
Scoring summary
Q1MINHassan Jones 26 yard pass from Wade Wilson (Chuck Nelson kick)MIN 7–0
Q1MINHenry Thomas 2 yard fumble return (Chuck Nelson kick)MIN 14–0
Q1MINChuck Nelson 39 yard field goalMIN 17–0
Q2DALRoger Ruzek 50 yard field goalMIN 17–3
Q3MINHassan Jones 64 yard pass from Wade Wilson (Chuck Nelson kick)MIN 24–3
Q3MINChuck Nelson 27 yard field goalMIN 27–3
Q3MINSteve Jordan 3 yard pass from Wade Wilson (Chuck Nelson kick)MIN 34–3
Q4MIND.J. Dozier 19 yard run (Chuck Nelson kick)MIN 41–3
Q4MINSafety, Kevin Sweeney tackled by Al Baker in end zoneMIN 43–3
Game information
  • Scoring
    • MIN – Anderson 7 run (Nelson kick) MIN 7–0
    • MIN – Rice 17 run (Nelson kick) MIN 14–0
    • RAMS – Johnson 3 pass from Everett (Lansford kick) MIN 14–7
    • MIN – Anderson 1 run (Nelson kick) MIN 21–7
    • RAMS – field goal Lansford 33 MIN 21–10
    • MIN – Hilton 5 pass from Wilson (Nelson kick) MIN 28–10
    • RAMS – Holohan 11 pass from Everett (Lansford kick) MIN 28–17
Game information
  • Scoring
    • MIN – field goal Nelson 47 MIN 3–0
    • SF – Rice 2 pass from Montana (Cofer kick) SF 7–3
    • SF – Rice 4 pass from Montana (Cofer kick) SF 14–3
    • SF – Rice 11 pass from Montana (Cofer kick) SF 21–3
    • MIN – Jones 5 pass from Wilson (kick failed) SF 21–9
    • SF – Craig 4 run (Cofer kick) SF 28–9
    • SF – Craig 80 run (kick failed) SF 34–9
Franchise
Stadiums
Culture
Lore
Rivalries
Division championships (20)
Conference championships (4)
League championships (1)
Retired numbers
Current league affiliations
Seasons (59)

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