Today is the Vikings 2011 home opener, as they are set to face former NFC Central rival Tampa Bay at Mall of America Field and get back to a .500 record after losing the season opener last week in San Diego. That storyline on its own makes today a big day for the Vikings organization and its fans.
But there’s more going on that makes today even bigger.
– Individual player introductions will return today for the first time in three years. The defensive starters will be introduced this week and then next week against the Detroit Lions the offensive starters will be announced.
– RB Adrian Peterson is poised to set yet another team record today. He currently is tied with Bill Brown and Chuck Foreman for career rushing TDs as a Viking with 52. One rushing TD today for Peterson will make him the Vikings career leader in that category and you have to wonder A) how high Peterson can make that number by the time he’s done and B) when and if anyone will break Peterson’s mark.
– CB Antoine Winfield will play in his 100th game as a Viking today. He was signed as a free agent in 2004 and it wouldn’t be too extreme to say he’s one of the best free agent signings in franchise history. He has 25 takeaways since arriving in Minnesota, has 5 return TDs and he was a key component in the Vikings defense dominating against the run (ranked #1 in the NFL 2006-08 and #2 in 2009).
– Last week teams that hosted games did a great job of commemorating the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks by honoring those who lost their lives that day and in subsequent days, months and years defending our communities and our freedom. The Vikings will continue that theme today in their game presentation, as several public safety and military elements will be included in pre-game and halftime festivities. Today’s Honorary Viking is Mona Dohman, former Maple Grove Police Chief, who is now the Minnesota Public Safety Commissioner. The United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon will take the field at halftime and perform their unique silent precision exhibition drill. Minnesota State Trooper Leah Carpenter will sing the National Anthem. The U.S. Army Reserve Fort Snelling Honor Guard will present the Colors today.
Tags: Adrian Peterson, Antoine Winfield
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 17 Comments »