The man who engineered the trade that brought Herschel Walker to the Vikings and helped strengthen a Cowboys franchise that won three Super Bowls in the 1990s has died at age 76.
“The Vikings are deeply saddened by the passing of Mike Lynn,” the team says in a statement posted at its website. “He was instrumental in the success of the Vikings for many years. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Lynn family in this difficult time.”
Lynn served as General Manager of the Vikings from 1975 through 1990. He thereafter worked as the head of the World League of American Football (which eventually became the World League then NFL Europe then NFL Europa), with his signature appearing on the ball in 1991.
Last month, a report surfaced that Lynn received 10 percent of all luxury suite revenue at the Metrodome, a contractual term that paid him between $14 million and $20 million. (Some may say it was the Herschel Walker deal of G.M. compensation packages.)
On Lynn’s watch, the Vikings made it to one Super Bowl and consistently contended for playoff berths. His draft picks included Hall of Famers Randall McDaniel and Chris Doleman. Lynn’s regime also signed Hall of Famer John Randle as an undrafted free agent. Other Pro Bowlers drafted by Lynn include defensive tackle Keith Millard, safety Joey Browner, cornerback Carl Lee, defensive tackle Henry Thomas, running back Terry Allen, tight end Steve Jordan, and quarterbacks Tommy Kramer and Wade Wilson.
Walker was supposed to be the final piece of a potential Super Bowl puzzle in 1989, but the team underachieved and missed the playoffs in each of Walker’s three seasons in Minnesota.