The Minnesota Vikings will play in this year's Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio, on August 9th.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced Wednesday the Vikings will play the Pittsburgh Steelers in the first preseason game of the year. The annual game takes place in the Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, while the game will be nationally televised on NBC's Sunday Night Football.
"We are tremendously excited about the opportunity to kick off the 2015 NFL preseason on a national stage," said Vikings Owner/President Mark Wilf in a statement. "This trip will give our young team a chance to appreciate the many players and individuals who have made the game what it is today."
It also will give the Vikings an extra preseason game, playing in five instead of the usual four preseason games.
"This is a tremendous honor for our organization to be featured in the Hall of Fame game," said Vikings coach Mike Zimmer. "It will give our players and coaches and extra week to prepare for the regular season and an additional opportunity for us to evaluate our roster."
The Vikings will be making their fourth appearance in the Hall of Fame Game, but their first in nearly 20 years, having last played in 1997.
According to the Pioneer Press' Chris Tomasson, the only teams that have gone longer than the Vikings since playing in the game are Detroit (1991), the New York Jets (1992), Atlanta (1994), San Diego (1994), Carolina (1995), Jacksonville (1995) and Baltimore.
The game will also coincide with induction of longtime Vikings center Mick Tingelhoff into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
He will join former Vikings Cris Carter (2013), Chris Doleman (2012), John Randle (2010), Randall Mcdaniel (2009), Gary Zimmerman (2008), Carl Eller (2004), Ron Yary (2001), Paul Krause (1998), Jim Finks (1995), Bud Grant (1994), Allan Page (1988) and Fran Tarkenton (1986) in the hall.
Former Steelers running back Jerome Bettis is also going into the hall on the same day.
The last time the Vikings played in the Hall of Fame Game, they beat Seattle 28-26.