Vikings iron man, HOFer Tingelhoff dies at 81

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MINNEAPOLIS — – Corridor of Fame heart Mick Tingelhoff, the final word iron man who began 240 consecutive video games at a bruising place for the Minnesota Vikings and performed in 4 Tremendous Bowls, has died. He was 81.

Undrafted in 1962, Tingelhoff performed 17 years for the Vikings and was by no means sidelined as soon as. His video games began streak is the third longest in NFL historical past, behind solely Brett Favre (297) and Jim Marshall (270). Philip Rivers tied Tingelhoff final season earlier than retiring.

“Mick was a type of guys who, once they made him, the mould was thrown away,” his former teammate, Chuck Foreman, mentioned in an interview on Saturday after the Vikings and the Professional Soccer Corridor of Fame introduced Tingelhoff’s dying.

No trigger was given. Tingelhoff’s cognition had been in decline, the toll of enjoying a punishing place for therefore lengthy throughout an period when security measures had been scant. He was within the first wave of former gamers who joined the concussion lawsuit filed in opposition to the league a decade in the past, alleging they had been misled in regards to the long-term results of head accidents. The 2013 settlement will value the NFL an estimated $1 billion over a 65-year interval.

Tingelhoff grew up on a farm in Nebraska and performed for the Cornhuskers earlier than latching on with the Vikings and making the change from linebacker through the preseason of his rookie 12 months. He grew to become the anchor of an imposing offensive line that helped them win 10 division titles in an 11-season span from 1968 to 1978. He was a five-time All-Professional choice, regardless of his undersized itemizing of 6-foot-2 and 237 kilos.

“Mick was a catalyst for our group and some of the revered gamers on these groups,” former coach Bud Grant as soon as mentioned. “I’ve little doubt that had he not performed heart he would have been a Corridor of Fame linebacker. He performed heart with the mentality and tenacity of a linebacker. Mick’s intangibles had been the factor that made him so nice. He was a captain the entire time I coached him, and guys checked out him for instance of learn how to do issues.”

Foreman joined the group in 1973 and made the Professional Bowl his first 5 years, passing the 1,000-yard mark for dashing in three straight seasons from 1975 to 1977 due largely to the blocking and management in entrance of him from Tingelhoff.

As a rookie, Foreman recalled in a telephone dialog with The Related Press that Grant instructed him to pay shut consideration to Tingelhoff and fellow working again Dave Osborn.

“He mentioned, ‘Simply do all the things these guys do, and you will be all proper,'” Foreman mentioned. “I do not assume you may give a greater praise to a teammate.”

Tingelhoff additionally had a giant hand within the success of quarterback Fran Tarkenton, one other one of many six Corridor of Famers from Minnesota’s dominant groups from the Seventies. Tingelhoff’s No. 53 jersey was retired in 2001 when he was inducted into the Vikings Ring of Honor.

“He gave 150% each play,” Foreman mentioned. “That is what separated him from everyone else.”

Tingelhoff met his spouse, Phyllis, at Nebraska and was already married by the point the 20-round NFL draft was staged in 1962. Regardless of being handed over, he was decided to make it as a professional and performed with that very same verve from begin to end of his profession.

Tingelhoff needed to wait 31 years for induction into the Hall of Fame after he first grew to become eligible, lastly having his second in 2015 by means of election by a senior committee. Tarkenton was his presenter. His speech was temporary, as he joined Tarkenton, defensive sort out Alan Web page, security Paul Krause, offensive sort out Ron Yary and defensive finish Carl Eller in Canton, Ohio. Grant, the coach, can be enshrined there.