As we continue our numerical journey through the history of the Minnesota Vikings, we’ve now arrived at the number 32. This number has been associated with a lot of running backs throughout the history of the National Football League, and that’s the case for the Vikings as well. Most of them, however, served as backups during their time in Minnesota.
We’ll start with Oscar Reed, who played for the Vikings from 1968 to 1974, making him the player that wore the number the longest in Vikings’ history. Reed played for the Vikings for seven seasons, but only started 29 of his 79 career games as a member of the team. In those seven seasons, he rushed for 1,968 yards and eight touchdowns and also added 676 yards and three scores on 92 career catches. He moved on to play for the Atlanta Falcons for one season before hanging it up for good.
Next, we fast forward to 1994 and running back Amp Lee. Lee was never known much for his running, but he was an outstanding weapon out of the backfield as a received. In his three seasons with the Vikings, he averaged about 57 catches a season, including a 71-catch campaign in 1995. He had more than twice as many receiving yards in his Vikings’ tenure as he had rushing yards. After his three seasons in Minnesota, he had stops in both St. Louis and Philadelphia before he left the league.
Lastly, we move on to running back Toby Gerhart, who wore the number for the team from 2010 to 2013. Gerhart proved to be a pretty capable backup option for Adrian Peterson when he was called upon, and managed to parlay that into a big free agent contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars. . .after which he promptly fell off the face of the earth. Still, he did average 4.7 yards/carry sitting behind the best running back of his generation, and gave us a couple of memorable moments, at least.
As an honorable. . .I suppose. . .mention, who could forget about Onterrio Smith?
Smith actually showed some decent ability as a running back in his two seasons in Minnesota, but then. . .well, we know what happened. It would have been interesting to see how Smith could have developed had he given himself the opportunity to do so.
Those are the highlights for the number 32, folks. Backup running backs everywhere.
Vikings that have worn the number 32:
- Ray Hayes (1961)
- Bill McWatters (1964)
- Oscar Reed (1968 - 1974)
- Jimmy Edwards (1979)
- Tony Galbreath (1981 - 1983)
- David Nelson (1984)
- Steve Harris (1987)
- Darryl Harris (1988)
- Rick Bayless (1989)
- Tripp Welborne (1992)
- Shawn Jones (1993)
- Amp Lee (1994 - 1996)
- Robert Green (1997)
- Anthony Bass (1999)
- Onterrio Smith (2003 - 2004)
- Toby Gerhart (2010 - 2013)
- Antone Exum, Jr. (2014 - present)
Moving on to the number 31 tomorrow, folks. . .we’re getting closer to the end of the countdown, which means we’re getting closer to the start of the season!
Who is the greatest Viking to wear the number 32?
This poll is closed
Toby Gerhart (2010 - 2013)
Amp Lee (1994 - 1996)
Oscar Reed (1968 - 1974)