While sons around the state of Minnesota consider giving a purple tie for Father's Day, the NFL has released its figures on the number of father-son combinations who have played in the league.
The NFL has had 147 players whose fathers also played in the league, and among those are 11 such instances from the Vikings.
From a league-wide standpoint, one of the most interesting duos will become reality when Dallas Cowboys rookie linebacker Bobby Carpenter follows in his father's footsteps. Rob Carpenter played for current Cowboys coach Bill Parcells when Parcells was coaching the New York Giants.
"My dad says Bill Parcells always valued hard work, and that's something that
I'm going to bring to the table every day," Bobby Carpenter said.
There are four other father-son combinations that could join the family ranks if the sons make the opening-day rosters in September.
The Vikings don't have any players among the 36 active sons in the NFL, but they do have 11 father-son pairings in their history.
Last year's linebackers coach Pete Bercich played for the Vikings from 1995-99 and eventually ended up back on Mike Tice's coaching staff. Bercich's father, Bob, was a safety for the Dallas Cowboys from 1960-61.
The Faust family goes way back for the Vikings. Paul played linebacker for Minnesota in 1967, and his father George was a running back-linebacker for the 1939 Chicago Cardinals.
Maybe the most famous former Viking to have a son play in the NFL is former Vikings running back Chuck Foreman, who played from 1973-79 before adding another NFL year under his belt with the New England Patriots. His son, Jay, has been a journeyman linebacker in the NFL, playing for the Buffalo Bills from 1999-2001, the Houston Texans from 2002-04 and the Oakland Raiders in 2005.
Guard Wes Hamilton played nine years for the Vikings (1976-84), and now his son, Ben, is carving out a nice career in Denver, where he has played since 2001.
There was also a Vikings connection in Super Bowl XL. While tight end Don Hasselbeck never reached the Super Bowl with the Vikings in 1984 (and also played for New England from 1977-83, Los Angeles Raiders in 1983 and the New York Giants in 1985), his son, Matt, is only months removed from leading the Seattle Seahawks to the Super Bowl. Meanwhile, another son of Don's, Tim, is currently with the New York Giants and has also played for the Eagles (2002) and Redskins (2003-04) as a quarterback.
Former Viking Jay Humphrey played tackle for Minnesota from 1999-2001 before moving on to Denver in 2002 and Jacksonville in 2003. His father Tom played center for the Kansas City Chiefs in 1974.
Quarterback Archie Manning ended his long NFL career with a two-year stint in 1983 and 1984 taking a beating in Minnesota. Previously, Archie made a name for himself in New Orleans (1971-82) and Houston (1982-83). Two of his sons are now making big names for themselves in the NFL, Peyton with the Indianapolis Colts (1998-present) and Eli with the New York Giants (2004-present).
Guard Palmer Pyle is listed as having played for the Vikings in 1964, sandwiched between four years (1960-63) with the Baltimore Colts and one year (1966) with the Oakland Raiders. His son, Eric Kumerow, played linebacker and defensive end for the Miami Dolphins from 1988-1990.
Tackle Steve Smith made a career with four teams, the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1966, the San Francisco 49ers in 1966-67, the Vikings from 1968-70 and the Philadelphia Eagles in 1974. His son, Brady, played defensive end longer but was with only two teams, the New Orleans Saints from 1996-99 and the Atlanta Falcons from 2000-2005.
Linebacker Steve Stonebreaker started his career as a linebacker with the Vikings (1962-63) before moving on to the Baltimore Colts (1964-66) and New Orleans Saints (1967-68). Steve's son, Mike, played linebacker for the Chicago Bears in 1991 and New Orleans Saints in 1994 before hanging it up.
Finally, running back Tommy Wilson ended his career with one year of service with the Vikings after playing for the Los Angeles Rams (1956-61) and Cleveland Browns (1962). His son, Steve, played defensive back and wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys from 1979-81 and Denver Bronces from 1982-88.
Father's Day: Vikings Style
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