Trivia: What NFL
team won both the 1982 and 1987 strike seasons.
1987 Strike Season -
Bad Blood Abounds!
As an 8-7 wild card team, we just upset the teams with NFC's best regular season records (New Orleans saints 12-3 and Bill Walsh's 49ers 13-2). To put these upsets into perspective, this year marked the emergence of Montana to a guy name Jerry Rice. Up to that point in history, we had been smothered by the Bill Walsh - Joe Montana combo ... the future would be about the same for the Vikings. To be a Viking fan, I think it should be a prerequisite to have watched the January 9, 1988 game versus the 49ers. It will go down as one of the greatest Minnesota Viking victories in our history. The last time I viewed a copy of this video taped game, I couldn't help myself ... it was as if I was watching a live event. To fully understand this I guess you'd have to live through the torment inflicted by Joe Montana ... arguably the greatest quarterback ever.
1987 was a strike season ... marred by the scab. The solidarity of the Minnesota Vikings was lead and held together by none other than Steve Jordan ... a real stand up guy, and one hell of a tight end ... arguably the greatest of our history. Not one of our players crossed the line. In fact, as a bit of trivia, our balding-beer-gutted scab quarterback was actually the back up quarterback of the Len Dawson in Super Bowl IV. Doing a little math, 22 minus 4 equals 18 years later. Needless to say that we lost all our replacement games. For some reason, some teams were more prepared for scab-ball than others.
The prime benefactor of our incredible upset victories would be the Washington Redskins, where the championship game was to be played at RFK, not in Minnesota. You see, Washington won all of their replacement games, and yes, they did have players that crossed the line to collect a pay check. At the time, Washington was unstoppable at RFK. At the time, they had the longest home winning streak of any NFL team. The NFL's equivalent to winning at RFK would be comparable to climbing Mt. Everest.
If you were to turn the scab ball won/loss records around, or you were to eliminate these games, both teams would have been tied. Our last regular season game was played in Minnesota facing those same Redskins. Yes, we lost that game in overtime, but you can't help but wonder, what if the scab games didn't count. As it was, that last game didn't offer much to Vikings as they were already a playoff bound team with no hope of having a home game.
What I can tell you is that if the 1987 Championship game was played at the Metro-Dome, the outcome would most certainly have been quite different.
Once again, the Minnesota Vikings found themselves on the high road ... left only with the bitter loss of what might of been ... or what could of been.
Bad Blood Abounds!
The Viking Ghost