Three Hall of Famers who almost played for the Minnesota Vikings (Part 2)
July 13, 2020
Brian Urlacher – LB
During the early portion of the 21st century, the Minnesota Vikings had to deal with going up against Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher twice each season. It was never an easy task.
The All-Pro linebacker became a free agent during the 2013 off-season after 13 years in Chicago. When figuring out what to do next, Urlacher was reportedly considering deals from both the Minnesota and the Denver Broncos.
Eventually, the veteran linebacker didn’t sign with either team but decided to retire from the NFL.
The Vikings arguably ended up having the worst defense in the entire 2013 league. Minnesota gave up the most points that year and their pass defense couldn’t cover a sloth.
So would Urlacher make much of a difference for the Vikings in 2013? His impact might have been too significant, but he likely wouldn’t have been much worse than what they put out on the field.
Dan Marino – QB
In terms of quarterbacks, the Vikings didn’t have much stability under center after a 1999 season that resulted in Jeff George starting 10 games for them.
Heading into the 2000 season, its group of quarterbacks were led by an unproven passer in Daunte Culpepper. Culpepper seemed to have been going to step in and be the starter for the Vikings in this year, but the team also showed some interest in signing future Hall of Fame passer Dan Marino.
Marino spent his entire career being a member of the Miami Dolphins and during the 2000 off-season, he was going to retire or sign with Minnesota. In the end, the 38-year-old quarterback decided that his time in the NFL was finshed and he chose to retire rather than giving it one last shot with the Vikings.
It might be a tough decision for Marino to make as he was never able to win a Super Bowl during his pro career. Joining a Minnesota offense including playmakers like Randy Moss, Robert Smith , and Cris Carter could have been the perfect recipe for the veteran signal-caller to win his first-ever championship.
Luckily for the Vikings, Culpepper ended up playing well during the 2000 season and the team was able to make it all the way to the NFC Championship.