The History of the Vikings on Thanksgiving is Really Awesome

Turkey peanut butter. © Kelly Wilkinson/IndyStar / USA TODAY NETWORK.

The Minnesota Vikings host the New England Patriots on Thanksgiving night, and the team’s Turkey Day record is actually pretty impressive.

Minnesota, a three-point favorite over New England, hopes to survive a heartbreaking loss to the Dallas Cowboys four days ago. The Vikings lost 40-3 to Mike McCarthy’s team, a troubling box score for any NFL team, especially an 8-2 version at home.

But the Vikings’ history suggests the team will bounce back. The franchise has an eye-popping 6-2 (.750) record heading into Thanksgiving.

October 9, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States of America; Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell. Mandatory credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

There’s a tendency to believe Minnesota is struggling because of its Super Bowl shortfall and historic snakebite, but Turkey Day isn’t the problem. In fact, Minnesota is one of the best Thanksgiving clubs in NFL history.

This is a sequel to Vikings Thanksgiving;

  • 1969: Vikings over Lions, 27-0
  • 1987: Vikings over Cowboys, 44-38
  • 1988: Vikings over Lions, 23-0
  • 1995: Lions over Vikings, 44-38
  • 1998: Vikings over Cowboys, 46-36
  • 2000: Vikings over Cowboys, 27-15
  • 2016: Lions over Vikings, 16-13
  • 2017: Vikings over Lions, 30-23

Among all teams in NFL history that have played at least five games on the holiday, the Vikings’ .750 winning percentage is third-best all-time:

1. Philadelphia Eagles (6-1) .857
2. Los Angeles Rams (4-1) .800
3. Minnesota Vikings (6-2) .750
t4. Miami Dolphins (5-2) .714
t4. Tennessee Titans (5-2) .714

October 10, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States of America; General view of Minnesota Vikings fans. Mandatory credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports.

The Patriots are also decent on Turkey Day, posting a 3-2 (.600) record since their first appearance in 1984. Not surprisingly, the losses came before the Tom Brady era, while the wins came with Brady at QB1.

This year’s game features two teams that could make a run for the postseason. The Vikings have a 99% chance of making the playoffs Five thirty eight, and the Patriots are sitting pretty at 55%. New England has won three straight since losing at home to the Chicago Bears at Gillette Stadium a month ago.

For the first time since 2000, the Vikings will experience the Patriots’ brand without Brady. By the way, the last time Minnesota beat New England was in 2000, before Brady took over. Minnesota is 0-6 all-time against Brady-led teams and 1-5 against current Patriots captain Bill Belichick.

And never forget Randy Moss’s party 24 years ago.

Randy Moss

Dustin Baker He is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday Raun Sawh and Sal seasoning. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Guilty pleasures listed: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos’ and The Doors (band).