Saints vs. Vikings Series History: A Tale of Two Cities

Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints and Minnesota Vikings meet tonight in the 2017 season opener for both teams. Minnesota is also the site of the final game of this NFL season, as host of Super Bowl LII. Before we jump ahead into the future, however, we will embrace a bit of the New Orleans Saints’ past. Canal Street Chronicles will look back at a series history of each of the Saints opponents during the season. We begin the year as the Saints do, with a look at the team’s history against the Minnesota Vikings.

The Saints and Vikings have a fairly extensive history against one another. They have played against each other 31 times in regular season meetings or playoffs before tonight, the most of any team New Orleans has faced that was not a one-time or current divisional foe. The Saints have an 11-20 overall record in the series, including 1-2 in playoff meetings and a 3-12 record in Minnesota.

The last meeting between the two teams was in New Orleans during the 2014 season, a 20-9 Saints victory. The very first game these two played in Minneapolis was September 27, 1970, resulting in a 26-0 victory by the Vikings. The teams have not met in Minnesota since a 42-20 New Orleans win during the 2011 season. They have faced off 3 times in season openers (1976, 1978, and 2010), each of the three games being played in New Orleans, with the Saints winning the last two.

The Vikings were one of the NFC’s dominant franchises through the early to mid-1970s. They went to four super bowls between 1970 and 1976 with offensive stars like Fran Tarkenton, former Saints receiver John Gilliam, running back Chuck Foreman, and a dominant defense nicknamed “The Purple People Eaters”. New Orleans lost six straight games to Minnesota during that time frame, a streak that was finally broken with a 31-28 victory in the 1978 season opener.

The Vikings have a much longer playoff history than the …

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