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The Minnesota Vikings are one of pro football's most successful franchises, with seventeen divisional championships, twenty-five postseason berths, and four Super Bowl appearances to their name. Yet as any Minnesotan can attest to, life as a Vikings fan can be a maddening affair-while the Vikings were the first team to appear in four Super Bowls, they were also the first to lose four Super Bowls.Armand Peterson'sThe Vikings Readeris the fascinating, yard-by-yard chronicle of fifty years of Vikings football from the perspective of the sportswriters and other commentators who were there as the stories unfolded. Through a wide range of regional articles, national columns, and book excerpts-all framed by Peterson's own insightful narrative-this impressionistic history invites readers to relive such defining moments as:Fran Tarkenton's four touchdowns as the Vikings beat the Chicago Bears in their first game on September 17, 1961 the inspirational "40 for 60" team of 1969 and the Vikings' first Super Bowl appearance the dominance of the 1970s, the vaunted "Purple People Eaters" defense, and three more crushing Super Bowl defeats the 1998 Vikings' NFL scoring record, led by Cunningham, Carter, Moss, and Smith roller-skating cheerleaders, the "Last Great Tailgate Party" at Met Stadium, ownership controversies, and Adrian Peterson's single-game rushing record classic reportage from Jim Klobuchar, Sid Hartman, Frank Deford, Patrick Reusse, Peter King, Jim Murray, and many othersFrom the early days of Fran Tarkenton to the rushing records of Adrian Peterson, from the bleachers of Met Stadium to the locker rooms of the Metrodome,The Vikings Readerrevels in the plays that have brought generations of purple and gold fans to their feet-or left them groaning in their seats-and brings Vikings football to life for fans everywhere.
Armand Peterson is a retired engineer and the coauthor of Town Ball: The Glory Days of Minnesota Amateur Baseball (Minnesota, 2006).