The Hall of Fame Game marks the start of the professional football season. The game takes place in Canton, Ohio, on Hall of Fame induction weekend, and is our first taste of the NFL following the long, dark tea time of the off-season.
According to Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, there seems to be a bit of buzz gathering that the Minnesota Vikings could be a part of the Hall of Fame Game for the first time in nearly two decades when the game happens on 9 August.
The game generally includes at least one team that is having a player enshrined in the Hall, and as Tomasson points out, last year's game had two teams with players getting inducted facing off, as the New York Giants (Michael Strahan) took on the Buffalo Bills (Andre Reed).
The last time the Vikings took part in the Hall of Fame Game was back in 1997, as they defeated the Seattle Seahawks. Only six teams have been absent from the game longer than the Vikings, and of those six teams, only one has a player being inducted this year. . .the San Diego Chargers, who will be represented in this year's Hall of Fame class by the late Junior Seau. The Chargers last played in the Hall of Fame Game in 1994.
If they are selected to take part in the Hall of Fame Game, the Vikings would start camp earlier than expected and play five pre-season games rather than four. That could work to Minnesota's advantage, as they would have more time to evaluate talent and decide how the roster is going to be shaped. Of course, on the flip side, that's one more game for players to potentially get injured in, too.
We will likely know by the end of the month who the teams taking part in this year's Hall of Fame Game will be. Do you want to see the Vikings taking part in this year's festivities?