1996 Minnesota Vikings season

1996 Minnesota Vikings season
Head coach Dennis Green
Home field Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
Record 9–7
Division place 2nd NFC Central
Playoff finish Lost NFC Wild Card Playoff (at Cowboys) 15–40

The 1996 Minnesota Vikings season was the 36th year of season play for the Minnesota Vikings and the 77th regular season of the National Football League. The Vikings finished with a record of nine wins and seven losses.

For the season, the Vikings sported new uniforms, adding the team's logo to both sleeves of the jersey. These uniforms would remain in use with the Minnesota Vikings until 2005.

The Vikings season started off with a bang, winning their first four regular season games under backup quarterback Brad Johnson, who filled in for an injured Warren Moon. However, they ran into struggles as an injury to Johnson forced Moon to regain his starting position. Luckily for the Vikings, they won three of their final four games in order to clinch a playoff spot. The Vikings were crushed by the defending Super Bowl champion Dallas Cowboys, 40-15 in the Wildcard round, making it the fourth year that the Vikings didn't make it out of the Wildcard round in the Dennis Green era.


T Scott Dill (Buccaneers)DE Roy Barker (49ers)
DE Robert Goff (Saints)T Rick Cunningham (Raiders)
LB Dixon Edwards (Cowboys)TE Adrian Cooper (49ers)
TE David Frisch (Patriots)LB Jack Del Rio (Dolphins)
DB Anthony Prior (Jets)S Charles Mincy (Buccaneers)
T Ariel Solomon (Steelers)
LB Darryl Talley (Falcons)

1996 Draft

1996 Minnesota Vikings Draft
Draft order Player name Position College Notes
Round Selection
116 Duane ClemonsLinebackerCalifornia
245 James ManleyDefensive tackleVanderbilt
375 Moe WilliamsRunning backKentucky
497 Hunter GoodwinTight endTexas A&Mfrom Cardinals[a]
112 Traded to the Arizona Cardinals[a]
5137 Traded to the Arizona Cardinals[a]from Giants[b]
148 Sean BoydDefensive backNorth Carolina
6182 Traded to the New York Giants[b]
7223 Jon MerrillOffensive tackleDuke
^[a] Minnesota traded their 4th round selection (112th overall) and the Giants 5th round selection (137th overall) to Arizona to move up 15 spots to the 97th overall selection and make this pick.
^[b] During the 1995 NFL draft, the Giants traded their 1995 6th round selection (189th overall) and 1996 5th round selection (137th overall) to Minnesota in exchange for their 1996 6th round selection (182nd overall) and safety Vencie Glenn.


1August 3San Diego ChargersW 23-20 (OT)1-0Metrodome34,367
2August 8Buffalo BillsL 12-351-1Metrodome36,297
3August 19at Miami DolphinsL 17-241-2Joe Robbie Stadium55,598
4August 23at New Orleans SaintsL 13-161-3Louisiana Superdome35,728

Regular season


Week Date Opponent Result Record Venue Attendance
1 September 1 Detroit Lions W 17–13 1–0 Metrodome 52,972
2 September 8 at Atlanta Falcons W 23–17 2–0 Georgia Dome 42,688
3 September 15 at Chicago Bears W 20–14 3–0 Soldier Field 61,301
4 September 22 Green Bay Packers W 30–21 4–0 Metrodome 64,168
5 September 29 at New York Giants L 15–10 4–1 Giants Stadium 70,970
6 October 6 Carolina Panthers W 14–12 5–1 Metrodome 60,894
7 October 13 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers L 24–13 5–2 Houlihan's Stadium 32,175
8 Bye
9 October 28 Chicago Bears L 15–13 5–3 Metrodome 58,143
10 November 3 Kansas City Chiefs L 21–6 5–4 Metrodome 59,552
11 November 10 at Seattle Seahawks L 42–23 5–5 Kingdome 50,794
12 November 17 at Oakland Raiders W 16–13 (OT) 6–5 Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 41,183
13 November 24 Denver Broncos L 21–17 6–6 Metrodome 59,142
14 December 1 Arizona Cardinals W 41–17 7–6 Metrodome 45,767
15 December 8 at Detroit Lions W 24–22 8–6 Silverdome 46,043
16 December 15 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 21–10 9–6 Metrodome 49,202
17 December 22 at Green Bay Packers L 38–10 9–7 Lambeau Field 59,306

Note: Intra-division opponents are in bold text.


NFC Central
(1) Green Bay Packers 13 3 0 .813 456 210 W5
(6) Minnesota Vikings 9 7 0 .563 298 315 L1
Chicago Bears 7 9 0 .438 283 305 L1
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 6 10 0 .375 221 293 W1
Detroit Lions 5 11 0 .313 302 368 L5


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
Wildcard December 28, 1996 at Dallas Cowboys L 40–15


Team leaders

Category Player(s) Value
Passing yardsBrad Johnson2,258
Passing touchdownsBrad Johnson17
Rushing yardsRobert Smith692
Rushing touchdownsLeroy Hoard
Robert Smith
Receiving yardsJake Reed1,320
Receiving touchdownsCris Carter10
PointsScott Sisson96
Kickoff return yardsQadry Ismail527
Punt return yardsDavid Palmer216
TacklesJeff Brady101
SacksJohn Randle11.5
InterceptionsOrlando Thomas5
Forced fumblesJohn Randle4

League rankings

Category Total yards Yards per game NFL rank
(out of 30)
Passing offense3,658228.68th
Rushing offense1,54696.624th
Total offense5,204325.212th
Passing defense3,121195.19th
Rushing defense1,966122.924th
Total defense5,087317.916th



  1. FFFFFF; text-align: center;1996 Minnesota Vikings staff
Front Office
  • Chairman of the Board – John Skoglund
  • President/Chief Executive Officer – Roger Headrick

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches


Defensive Coaches

  • Defensive Coordinator – Foge Fazio
  • Defensive Line – John Levra
  • Inside Linebackers – Tom Olivadotti
  • Outside Linebackers – Trent Walters
  • Defensive Backs – Richard Solomon

Special Teams Coaches

Strength and Conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – Steve Wetzel
  • Assistant Strength and Conditioning – Jeff Friday


Final roster

1996 Minnesota Vikings final roster

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen


Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists

Practice squad

Rookies in italics
53 Active, 7 Inactive, 0 Practice squad


  1. 2009 Minnesota Vikings Media Guide. p. 251. Retrieved 2010-02-26.
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