Francis Asbury "Fran" Tarkenton was born February 3, 1940 in Virginia. He would move to Athens, Georgia, and attend high school there.
Tarkenton would attend the University of Georgia and lead the Bulldogs to the 1959 Southeastern Conference championship.
The Minnesota Vikings drafted Tarkenton in the third round of the 1961 NFL Draft, and he was picked in the fifth round of the 1961 AFL draft by the Boston Patriots. He signed with the Vikings and would become one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history.
Tarkenton would play from 1961-1966 for the Vikings, and then from 1967-1971 with the New York Giants, and then 1972-1978 back with the Vikings, where he would lead the team to three NFC championships, but finish 0-3 in Super Bowls.
Regardless of never winning the big game, Tarkenton was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1986. He was a 9-time Pro Bowl player, and the NFL MVP in 1975.
In his 18 NFL seasons, Tarkenton completed threw for 47,003 yards and 342 touchdowns, with 266 interceptions. Tarkenton's 47,003 career passing yards rank him 8th all time, while his 342 career passing touchdowns is 4th all time. His 124 regular season wins is fifth all time. Tarkenton was one of the original dual-threat QBs in the NFL, and gave defenses big problems with his legs. He racked up rack up 3,674 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns on 675 carries.
Here's to you, Fran Tarkenton. Happy Birthday.