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Doug Sutherland: A Viking legend.


    Jamie Harmer /April 5th 2022 / Photo:

    Although before my time, Doug Sutherland played football for the Minnesota Vikings. Sutherland didn't start off as a Viking. He was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in 1970. He was taken in the 14th round with pick #348. After one year with the Saints, Sutherland made his way to Minnesota. From 1971 through 1978, he played among one of the leagues most feared defensive fronts, The Purple People Eaters. 

Playing defensive tackle, he was surrounded by the likes of Alan Page, Jim Marshall, and Carl Eller. In 1975, Sutherland would earn a larger role when Gary Larsen would retire following the '74 season. In 1978 the "band" broke up. The Purple People Eaters had packed up and went their separate ways. Leaving Marshall and Sutherland as the remaining two. 

Jim Marshall went on to retire after the '79 season, leaving Sutherland the last holdover from the once-dominant front. 1980 would be Sutherland's final year with the Vikings. Afterwards, he went on to play one more year with the Seattle Seahawks, then retired from the game. Sutherland was named a 50 greatest Viking in 2010, and was a committed member to the Minnesota Vikings Legends. Doug Sutherland passed away today at the age of 73.