Over the past few years, there have been a lot of men that have entered the Pro Football Hall of Fame that could primarily be identified as Minnesota Vikings. The Class of 2016 doesn't have anyone that you could put under that heading, but there are a couple of individuals that do have ties to our favorite football team.
The biggest name in the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2016 is quarterback Brett Favre, who was voted in as a first-ballot Hall of Famer. After tormenting the Vikings for years as a member of the Green Bay Packers, Favre famously made the move to Minnesota in 2009 and played for the Vikings for two seasons. The team came within an eyelash of the Super Bowl in 2009, and 2010. . .well, it didn't go quite as well for Favre or the Vikings. Favre's enshrinement comes as no surprise, given his place in NFL history, and will give fair-weather fans everywhere the opportunity to pretend that they didn't spend four or five years wishing for the absolute worst for him.
The person in this year's class with the strongest ties to the Vikings is Tony Dungy. A former University of Minnesota quarterback, Dungy converted to safety upon entering the NFL as an undrafted free agent in 1977. After a few years as a player, Dungy moved into the coaching ranks, where he achieved his true success. He spent four years as the Vikings' defensive coordinator under Dennis Green, and then moved on to a couple of head coaching stints. His first head coaching job was with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he built the team that wound up winning a Super Bowl under Jon Gruden. From there, he moved on to Indianapolis, where he achieved his greatest success, including a Super Bowl victory of his own in 2006 when the Colts defeated the Chicago Bears. Dungy's last year on the sidelines was 2008, and he has worked as an analyst for NBC ever since.
The other members of the Class of 2016 are wide receiver Marvin Harrison, linebacker Kevin Greene, offensive tackle Orlando Pace, and former San Francisco 49ers owner Ed DeBartolo, Jr. Two members nominated by the Seniors Committee, offensive lineman Dick Stanfel and quarterback Ken Stabler, will also be enshrined.
Congratulations to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2016!