The Vikings will win their 500th regular season win in team history on Sunday, and Jerry Raichou couldn’t think of a better team to play against than Green Bay.
Reichou scored a goal in Minnesota’s first game as an expansion team, a stunning 37-13 defeat in Chicago on September 17, 1961 at Metropolitan Stadium. He ended up spending his first 59 seasons with the Vikings as successor, scout, player director, and consultant, before retiring after the 2019 season.
Since this first victory, the Vikings have held a regular season record of 499-417-11. Their first attempt to become the 15th NFL team to win 500 regular season victories will be against rival Packers at US Bank Stadium.
“It would be great,” Raikhov said Saturday from his home in Tucson, Arizona, “they have a very good team against them. It would be damn good. ”
The Vikings hit the 500 wins mark when the playoffs include 34-14 wins against the Oakland Raiders at US Bank Stadium on September 22, 2019. With their 21-30 playoffs, their total the record is 520– 447-11.
Raichou fondly recalls Minnesota’s first victory. The Vikings had little chance of beating the Bears, but they rolled back to victory, losing to rookie quarterback Fran Tarkenton with 250 yards and four touchdowns.
Tarkenton also ran for the touchdown. One of his touchdown passes was a 29-yard shot in the third quarter to Raichou, who caught three passes for 103 yards.
“It was a lot of fun to play this game because there was no pressure to win,” Raichou said. “We played pretty damn great. It was a big surprise for the Bears. ”
Raikhov remembers that the stands at the Metropolitan Stadium were only half full.
“We were still trying to get the fans interested in professional football,” he said. “The University (Minnesota) was strong at the time and most of the fans were there. There was no particular applause. It was just a different feeling. ”
The situation will be completely different on Sunday. US Bank Stadium will have over 66,000 sold-out views as the Vikings strive for a landmark victory.