2 Vikings Make the Cut as Top Players in NFL History

Minnesota Vikings Randy Moss moons the crowd after scoring a touchdown during the fourth quarter of their game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, January 9, 2005 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. © Dale Guldan / USA TODAY NETWORK.

NFL training camps will heat up in three weeks, but until then, NFL-themed media is finishing its “list” section of the preseason.

2 Vikings Make the Cut as Top Players in NFL History

Accordingly, CBS Sports released its list of the Top 25 Players in NFL History this week, and two Minnesota Vikings alumni made the cut.

Notable snubs included Carl Eller, Fran Tarkenton, Adrian Peterson, and Randall McDaniel.

But here’s who made it.

No. 21 (of 25)
Alan Page

Page actually won the NFL MVP award — yes, defensive players used to win those once in a while — in 1971, two years after the Vikings won an “NFL Championship” in 1969. All told, Page tabulated nine Pro Bowl appearances and 8 All-Pro nods. Not bad. He also won Defensive Player of the Year twice (1971, 1973).

top players
Manny Rubio-USA TODAY Sports.

And that was all before he became an Associate Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court for 22 years.

At No. 21, CBS Sports‘ Bryan DeArdo explained Page’s placement, “Along with anchoring the Vikings’ legendary “Purple People Eater” defense, Page owns the distinction as the first defensive player to win NFL MVP. A Pro Bowler each year from 1968-76, Page amassed 148.5 career sacks, an unheard of number for a defensive tackle.”

NFL: Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings
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He added, “Page’s dominance helped the Vikings win three NFC titles and an NFL crown in 1969. He finished his career with three extremely solid seasons with the Bears, recording three sacks in his final game.”

Page was bestowed with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2018.

No. 17 (of 25)
Randy Moss

No Vikings fans anywhere will disagree with this one.

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

Moss singlehandedly created a generation of Vikings fans — including the men and women who write for this website — not unlike Justin Jefferson’s current trajectory. He won Offensive Rookie of the Year in 1998, earned six Pro Bowl selections, and garnered four 1st-Team All-Pro honors. Moss holds the record for most receiving touchdowns in a season — 23 in 2007 with the New England Patriots — and most receiving touchdowns by a rookie (17 in 1998).

DeArdo wrote, “Moss’ nickname, ‘The Freak,’ was fitting as he possessed talents that at times appeared to be otherworldly. Moss burst onto the scene as a rookie by catching 17 touchdowns for the 15-1 Vikings.”

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

Moss ranks second all-time in receiving touchdowns behind Jerry Rice, who placed second on the CBS list.

“Nine years later, Moss enjoyed a historic partnership with Tom Brady that included both players setting individual records (Brady with 50 touchdown passes, Moss with 23 touchdown catches) for the NFL’s only undefeated team in a 16-game regular season. Moss is second all time behind Rice in career touchdown catches and is fourth all time in receiving yards,” DeArdo concluded.

According to CBS Sports, Tom Brady, a former Moss teammate, is the greatest player in NFL history.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.