With the National Football League getting into the first week of the 2015 regular season, it's time to take a look back at the Minnesota Vikings' history against their opponent for Week 1, the San Francisco 49ers. We're going to do this for all of the Vikings' opponent every week, hopefully fairly early in the week.
The Niners and Vikings have had a fairly even head-to-head series over the years . .at least as far as the regular season is concerned. That's what we're concerned about here, as we take a look back at the history between these two teams. As has been the case every time we've done this, these figures come from the good folks at Pro Football Reference.
Total Games Between the Vikings and the 49ers: 45 (40 regular season, 5 post-season)
All-Time Regular Season Record: Vikings, 21-18-1 (The Niners have a 4-1 advantage in the post-season)
Total Vikings Points Scored, Head-to-Head, Regular Season: 902 (22.55/game)
Total 49ers Points Scored, Head-to-Head, Regular Season: 905 (22.63/game)
Longest Vikings' Winning Streak vs 49ers: 5 (15 September 1963 - 24 October 1965)
Longest 49ers' Winning Streak vs Vikings: 4 (15 October 1961 - 2 December 1962)
Most Recent Vikings' Victory in San Francisco: 9 December 2007 (Final score 27-7)
Most Recent 49ers' Victory in San Francisco: 5 November 2006 (Final score 9-3)
Biggest Vikings' Victory in San Francisco: 20 points, 9 December 2007 (Final score 27-7)
Biggest 49ers' Victory in San Francisco: 44 points, 8 December 1984 (Final score 51-7)
A few other things about this matchup:
-The Niners had the head-to-head lead in this series for quite a while, but that's turned around recently as the Vikings have won five of the last six regular season meetings between these two teams, a streak that goes back to 24 October 1999. The Niners' lone victory in that stretch was the 9-3. . .yawn. . .thriller from 2006, which was basically the year the Vikings forgot how to play offense after the first six weeks of the season (when teams figured out that Brad Johnson could only throw the ball about ten yards downfield). Seriously, that game set NFL offenses back years.
-One of the big stories is Adrian Peterson's first game back after last season's legal issues, and he's making his return against a team that he's historically struggled against. The Vikings are 3-0 against the Niners in Peterson's career, but his numbers have not been great. In the 2007 victory linked above, Peterson carried the ball 14 times and gained. . .3 yards. Yes, three, his worst game as a professional. In the 2009 game between these two teams. . .the game that featured the Miracle at the Metrodome. . .Peterson had 19 carries for 85 yards. In 2012, in the early stages of his comeback from knee surgery, Peterson carried 25 times for 86 yards. He has not found the end zone in three games against San Francisco.
-We know that this will be the first time the Niners have seen Vikings' quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. This will also be the first time the Vikings have seen Niners' signal caller Colin Kaepernick. When these teams last met in 2012, the Niners were still starting Alex Smith at quarterback.
-Speaking of the Miracle at the Metrodome game, the Niners' starting quarterback in that contest? None other than Shaun Hill, who now serves as Bridgewater's backup. Hill played a pretty decent game that afternoon, completing 15-of-25 passes for 195 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He found Vernon Davis on a 20-yard touchdown pass midway through the fourth quarter to put the Niners up 24-20. It looked for a while like that score would hold up, until. . .well, you know. . .
And that's a bit of a look at the history between the San Francisco 49ers and your Minnesota Vikings. Hopefully the Vikings can add yet another regular season notch to their belts at the Niners' expense on Monday night.