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Who's the Vikings #2 QB all-time?

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The Minnesota Vikings are in the unusual position of knowing who their starting quarterback will be for at least the next three years. On a talented team with a No. 1 defense, Kirk Cousins has an opportunity to quickly ascend the rankings of all-time Vikings quarterbacks. Clearly Fran Tarkenton is No. 1 on the list, but who is behind him? How quickly could Cousins find himself in second place? Let’s have a look at which QB currently deserves that title….

 

Daunte Culpepper

Case for second place: While he finished with a 38-42 career record as a Viking, Culpepper is responsible for two of the best seasons in Vikings history and one of the best in NFL history. In 2000, he led the NFL in touchdowns with 33 and went 11-5 and in 2004 he posted 4,717 yards, 39 TDs and a 110.9 rating. Culpepper’s three Pro Bowls, two playoff wins overall 91.5 rating put him at the top of the non-Tarkenton list.

Pitfall: A knee injury shortened his time as Vikings’ quarterback. Also his 2002 and 2003 seasons were tough sledding as he combined for a 10-17 record and 78.5 rating.

 

Brett Favre

Case for second place: The 2009 season was one of the wildest rides Vikings fans have ever been blessed with. Favre bouncing back with 33 touchdowns and a 107.2 rating was stunning and filled with legendary moments. His win at Green Bay. The throw against the 49ers. The first round win over the Cowboys.

Pitfall: Well, there is 12-men in the huddle and his interception in the NFC Championship game. And the 2010 season, which was disastrous in a number of different ways.

 

Randall Cunningham

Case for second place: Like Favre, it was brief, but his time in Minnesota was incredible. Flinging the ball up to Randy Moss, Cunningham finished with the No. 1 rating in the NFL in 1998 and tossed 34 touchdowns. If not for a missed field goal, he would have taken the Vikings back to the Super Bowl.

Pitfall: In 1999, things came apart and Cunningham won just two of six starts.

 

Warren Moon

Case for second place: Moon only played three seasons, but he went 21-18 and performed magnificently in 1995 with 33 touchdowns and 14 interceptions at age 39.

Pitfall: Moon clearly lost his fastball by year three in Minnesota, only starting eight games and giving way to Brad Johnson as the starting QB. He only made the playoffs once and lost his only start as a Viking.

 

Tommy Kramer

Case for second place: The 1977 first-rounder had the makings of a franchise quarterback in his first three seasons as a starter, but fell on some hard times with injuries and inconsistency. But he bounced back in 1986 to lead the NFL in quarterback rating.

Pitfall: Kramer had a wildly up and down career. He only started 16 games one time in 13 years with the Vikings and his best season by winning percentage was 8-7. He led the NFL in interceptions in 1985 and finished with just a 72.8 career rating. Overall Kramer managed a 54-56 record.

 

Teddy Bridgewater

Case for second place: Bridgewater gets bonus points for what could have been. He went 11-5 in Year 2, 17-11 overall, came up with a number of big plays throughout his first two seasons and led a game-winning playoff drive that was thwarted by his own kicker and then suffered a knee injury that kept him out for nearly two years. He won over the head coach and locker room, the front office believed he’d be their starter for a long time.

Pitfall: Bridgewater did not have spectacular numbers overall, posting an 88.7 rating in his sophomore season and only started 28 games.

 

Case Keenum

Case for second place: There will always be a place in Vikings fans’ hearts for Keenum, who came off the bench to lead a 13-3 season and miracle playoff win over the New Orleans Saints. He finished 2017 in the top 10 in quarterback rating.

Pitfall: Keenum threw a key pick-six and was strip-sacked in the Vikings 38-7 loss in the NFC title game. It’s to be determined whether they made the right move to let him walk in free agency.

 

Sam Bradford

Case for second place: Following Bridgewater’s injury, Bradford nearly turned himself into the Vikings’ franchise quarterback. In 16 games (not including an official win over the Bears), he went 8-8 with a 101.2 rating. Bradford set the NFL record for completion percentage in 2016 and battled through a brutal set of injuries on the offensive line.

Pitfall: He started 4-0 and then went 4-8 the rest of the way. He threw key interceptions against Detroit and Washington and pulled a no-show against Indy to cost the Vikings a shot at the playoffs.

 

Rich Gannon

Case for second place: Gannon deserves to be graded on a “what-if” curve. Later in his career, Gannon reached the Super Bowl with the Raiders, leaving Minnesotans to wonder if the team had given him an opportunity as the full-time starter if things would have been different.

Pitfall: While he gets credit for turning into a star, Gannon never started a playoff game as a Viking. In three years as a semi-regular starter, Gannon went 19-16 with 40 touchdowns, 35 interceptions and a 74.6 rating.

http://www.1500espn.com/vikings-2/2018/07/second-best-quarterback-vikings-history/

 

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odd that Brad Johnson isn't mentioned as a possibility. not sure he should be our #2 all time, but deserves the recognition more than, say, Bridgewater does.

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Just now, vike daddy said:

odd that Brad Johnson isn't mentioned as a possibility. not sure he should be our #2 all time, but deserves the recognition more than, say, Bridgewater does.

Agreed, I actually think that Brad Johnson is pretty close to #2 for the franchise. I would lean towards it being Culpepper though just for the few great seasons that he had, and a lot of good ones, but Brad Johnson would be very high on my list for #2 QB's, because as compared to Favre, Moon, and Cunningham, he was here and played well longer for the Vikings. Looking at the numbers now, though, Moon had about the same number of passing yards that Johnson did, in considerably less games. I'd probably go:

1. Tarkenton
2. Culpepper
3. Moon
4. Kramer
5. Johnson

I think that feels right to me anyways.

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Interesting note in my QB studies quickly for this, there have only been 2 QB's in Vikings history to start 100+ games for the team: Tarkenton and Kramer. Culpepper is the next closest with 81, then Wade Wilson with 76. I feel like Wade Wilson could have made the list, because who doesn't like Deadpool?

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19 minutes ago, vike daddy said:

odd that Brad Johnson isn't mentioned as a possibility. not sure he should be our #2 all time, but deserves the recognition more than, say, Bridgewater does.

Pretty sad state where even Teddy gets mentioned as the #2 all time. Bradford too.

hard not to go with Culpepper though his peak was short lived.

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It really wouldn't be that tall a hill to climb to become the Vikings #2 QB all time. Would be great if in ten years as Cousins retires from the Vikings we look back and see him as the clear cut #2 of all time. I doubt he has any chance of catching #1 but if he ever topples #2 I would be in favor of seeing him try to chase down the top spot. Winning a SB would go a long, long ways towards that end.

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Easily Culpepper for me. Everybody else either didn't accomplish anything, or was only with the team for 1-2 years.

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How is Brooks Bollinger not on this list? He certainly played like #2...

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1 hour ago, Cearbhall said:

I doubt he has any chance of catching #1

If Cousins wins a Super Bowl, he’ll surpass Tarkenton. 

This fan base has been so hungry for a Championship, that which ever QB finally brings it home, he will forever be a legend. 

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1 hour ago, Heimdallr said:

Easily Culpepper for me. Everybody else either didn't accomplish anything, or was only with the team for 1-2 years.

Agree.  I don't actually believe it's all that much up in the air.  Kramer, despite being a starter for nearly a decade, was never more than a mediocre player at best, in my eyes.  There's a reason people were clamoring for Wade Wilson...who I actually feel was a better QB than Kramer.  

And no Semper, even if Cousins wins a Super Bowl, I don't believe he'll surpass Tarkenton.  Tarkenton was a home-grown talent and a HOF-level QB.  Cousins likely isn't ever going to get close to that, regardless of whether he wins a Super Bowl or not.  He's not Trent Dilfer or Joe Flacco, but he isn't Tarkenton either.  

 

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1 hour ago, disaacs said:

And no Semper, even if Cousins wins a Super Bowl, I don't believe he'll surpass Tarkenton.

I wasn't around for Tark but I disagree with this. Everyone will have their own thoughts and opinions but Cousins would be #1 in my book.

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I think, with Cousins/Super Bowl talk, that it comes down to if he wins a Super Bowl and is just okay for two years and then leaves, so he's only here three seasons and only one was good, I don't think he'd pass Tarkenton, if, instead, he is here three or more years, and is good to great through all of them, and we win a Super Bowl, then he would be.

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No love for Joe Kapp?  He got the Vikings to their first Super Bowl appearance, and only NFL championship.

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30 minutes ago, Virginia Viking said:

No love for Joe Kapp?  He got the Vikings to their first Super Bowl appearance, and only NFL championship.

He does throw the meanest right hook at least.  

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13 minutes ago, disaacs said:

He does throw the meanest right hook at least.  

I believe he's the toughest man ever to play the QB position.  The '69 team was very talented...however, they would not have gotten anywhere without Kapp's leadership

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