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1980 Minnesota Vikings season
Head Coach Bud Grant
General Manager Mike Lynn
Home Field Metropolitan Stadium
Results
Record 9–7
Place 1st NFC Central
Playoff Finish Lost NFC Divisional Playoff (at Eagles) 16-31
Timeline
Previous season Next season
1979 1981

The 1980 season was the Minnesota Vikings' 20th in the National Football League and their 14th under head coach Bud Grant. The Vikings finished with a 9–7 record, equal to that of the Detroit Lions, but won the NFC Central division title on the tiebreaker.

The most dramatic game of the season came in a Week 15 home game against Cleveland, with Minnesota at 8–6. The Vikings trailed 23–9 early in the fourth quarter, but with five seconds left in regulation, despite missing two field goals and two extra points in the game, they were on the Cleveland 46-yard line having reduced the Browns' lead to one point. Quarterback Tommy Kramer threw a Hail Mary pass that Ahmad Rashād at the 2-yard line before backing into the end zone to give Minnesota a 28–23 win.[1]

OffseasonEdit

1980 DraftEdit

1980 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Notes
Round Selection
1 9 Doug Martin Defensive tackle Washington
2 30 Willie Teal Defensive back Louisiana State from 49ers[a]
39 Traded to the San Francisco 49ers[a]
3 65 Traded to the San Francisco 49ers[a]
68 Brent Boyd Center UCLA from Saints[b]
4 92 Dennis Johnson Linebacker USC
5 121 Doug Paschal Running back North Carolina
122 Paul Jones Running back California from Saints[b]
6 148 Ray Yakavonis Defensive end East Stroudsburg (PA)
7 175 Henry Johnson Linebacker Georgia Tech
8 205 Traded to the Seattle Seahawks[c]
9 233 Dennis Mosley Running back Iowa in lieu of #232 (passed)[d]
10 259 Kenny Brown Wide receiver Nebraska
11 289 Sam Harrell Running back East Carolina
12 316 Thomas Lane Defensive back Florida A&M
^[a] The Vikings traded their second- and third-round selections (39th and 65th overall) to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for San Francisco's second-round selection (30th overall).
^[b] The Vikings traded RB Steve Riley to the New Orleans Saints in exchange for New Orleans' third- and fifth-round selections (68th and 122nd overall).
^[c] The Vikings traded their eighth-round selection (205th overall) to the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for DL Steve Niehaus.
^[d] The Vikings originally had the 232nd overall selection, but passed allowing Buffalo to move up and Minnesota to choose 233rd overall.

RosterEdit

1980 Minnesota Vikings roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists



Practice squad



Rookies in italics
53 Active, 5 Inactive, 5 Practice squad

PreseasonEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance[2]
1 August 9 San Diego Chargers W 21–17 1–0 Metropolitan Stadium 45,179
2 August 18 at Kansas City Chiefs L 10–14 1–1 Arrowhead Stadium 39,879
3 August 23 at Miami Dolphins W 17–10 2–1 Miami Orange Bowl 36,116
4 August 30 Cleveland Browns W 38–16 3–1 Metropolitan Stadium 47,262

Regular seasonEdit

ScheduleEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 September 7 Atlanta Falcons W 24–23 1–0 Metropolitan Stadium 44,773
2 September 14 Philadelphia Eagles L 7–42 1–1 Metropolitan Stadium 46,460
3 September 21 at Chicago Bears W 34–14 2–1 Soldier Field 59,983
4 September 28 at Detroit Lions L 7–27 2–2 Silverdome 80,291
5 October 5 Pittsburgh Steelers L 17–23 2–3 Metropolitan Stadium 47,583
6 October 12 Chicago Bears W 13–7 3–3 Metropolitan Stadium 46,751
7 October 19 at Cincinnati Bengals L 0–14 3–4 Riverfront Stadium 44,487
8 October 26 at Green Bay Packers L 3–16 3–5 Lambeau Field 56,191
9 November 2 at Washington Redskins W 39–14 4–5 Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium 52,060
10 November 9 Detroit Lions W 34–0 5–5 Metropolitan Stadium 46,264
11 November 16 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 38–30 6–5 Metropolitan Stadium 46,032
12 November 23 Green Bay Packers L 13–25 6–6 Metropolitan Stadium 47,234
13 November 30 at New Orleans Saints W 23–20 7–6 Louisiana Superdome 30,936
14 December 7 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 21–10 8–6 Tampa Stadium 65,649
15 December 14 Cleveland Browns W 28–23 9–6 Metropolitan Stadium 42,202
16 December 21 at Houston Oilers L 16–20 9–7 Astrodome 51,064

Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text.

Game summariesEdit

Week 15Edit

Week 15: Cleveland Browns at Minnesota Vikings – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Browns 7 6 3 7

23

Vikings 0 0 9 19

28

at Metropolitan Stadium, Bloomington, Minnesota

Game information
First quarter

Second quarter

  • CLE – Brian Sipe 2-yard run (kick failed). Browns 13–0.

Third quarter

  • MIN – Joe Senser 31-yard pass from Tommy Kramer (kick failed). Browns 13–6.
  • CLE – Don Cockroft 32-yard field goal. Browns 16–6.
  • MIN – Rick Danmeier 24-yard field goal. Browns 16–9.

Fourth quarter

  • CLE – Cleo Miller 1-yard run (Don Cockroft kick). Browns 23–9.
  • MIN – Ted Brown 7-yard pass from Tommy Kramer (kick failed). Browns 23–15.
  • MIN – Ahmad Rashād 12-yard pass from Tommy Kramer (Rick Danmeier kick). Browns 23–22.
  • MIN – Ahmad Rashād 46-yard pass from Tommy Kramer (kick failed). Vikings 28–23.

Trailing 23–9 entering the fourth quarter the Vikings came back and won on a desperation Hail Mary pass from quarterback Tommy Kramer to wide receiver Ahmad Rashād to clinch the NFC Central Division title in what became known as the "Miracle at the Met".

StandingsEdit

NFC Central
view · talk · edit W L T PCT PF PA
Minnesota Vikings 9 7 0 .563 317 308
Detroit Lions 9 7 0 .563 334 272
Chicago Bears 7 9 0 .438 304 264
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5 10 1 .344 271 341
Green Bay Packers 5 10 1 .344 231 371
[3]

PostseasonEdit

Week Date Opponent Result Venue Attendance
Divisional January 3 at Philadelphia Eagles L 16–31 Veterans Stadium 68,434

StatisticsEdit

Team leadersEdit

Category Player(s) Value
Passing yards Tommy Kramer 3,582
Passing touchdowns Tommy Kramer 19
Rushing yards Ted Brown 912
Rushing touchdowns Ted Brown 8
Receiving yards Ahmad Rashād 1,095
Receiving touchdowns Joe Senser 7
Points Rick Danmeier 81
Kickoff return yards Eddie Payton 1,184
Punt return yards Eddie Payton 251
Interceptions John Turner 6

League rankingsEdit

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 28)
Passing offense 3,688 230.5 3rd
Rushing offense 1,642 102.6 27th
Total offense 5,330 333.1 11th
Passing defense 3,400 212.5 24th
Rushing defense 2,456 153.5 25th
Total defense 5,856 366.0 26th

ReferencesEdit

AFC East Central West East Central West NFC
Baltimore Cincinnati Denver Dallas Chicago Atlanta
Buffalo Cleveland Kansas City NY Giants Detroit Los Angeles
Miami Houston Oakland Philadelphia Green Bay New Orleans
New England Pittsburgh San Diego St. Louis Minnesota San Francisco
NY Jets Seattle Washington Tampa Bay
1980 NFL DraftNFL PlayoffsPro BowlSuper Bowl XV

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