Hey Vikings fans! It’s been a while since we’ve done one of these player profiles, huh? I originally was going to do them through the whole year, but I think I realized that there was plenty going on during the football season to keep the blog interesting, so I decided to save them for the off season. I think the last time we did a player profile was somewhere around October! But, we’re back at them, and we’ll keep them up until the season starts up again. I’ll try to keep from repeating the ones from last season as long as I can.
Vikings fans, meet Jim Kleinsasser.
Kleinsasser has been a Viking since 1999. He started out playing a lot of fullback, but after a season or two he moved to mostly the tight end position. (He still lines up as a fullback from time to time)
Here’s a short bio from wikipedia (found HERE)
Jim Carter Kleinsasser (pronounced /KLINE-saw-sir/) (born January 31, 1977 in Carrington, North Dakota) is an American Football player who currently plays fullback and tight end for the Minnesota Vikings of the National Football League. He attended the University of North Dakota and played for the Fighting Sioux football team. He is commonly known by his nickname, “Jim Clank Clank,” and also “Jim Kleinsausage.” He was born Jimmy Carter Kleinsasser.
Jim Kleinsasser attended Carrington High School in Carrington, North Dakota and was a letterman and a standout in football, basketball, and track & field. In football, he was a two time All-Region honoree and All-State honoree, and was twice named the Gatorade Circle of Champions North Dakota Player of the Year. At Carrington High School, Kleinsasser was a bench player on the 1995 Class B State Championship basketball team.
Kleinsasser has become an important part of the Vikings blocking scheme over the years. When he first came into the league, he had some problems with dropping passes and fumbling the ball, but fans quickly forgave him when they realized he was a solid run blocker and pass blocker. Since the early years, he’s also developed into a sure handed ball carrier as well, despite the fact that he lacks some speed and quickness to get down the field.
I was one of the fans that complained about Kleinsasser early on. I hated to see him get the ball. Now I look at him as a very significant part of the offense. With Visanthe Shiancoe stepping up in the last part of the season last year, Kleinsasser is never going to be the go to tight end, but he is a solid contributer to the blocking scheme that makes the Vikings one of the toughest running teams in the NFL.
By the way, I did omit a sentence from Wikipedia that referenced Big Foot as being Jim Kleinsasser’s dad. You have to admit, there is a bit of resemblance there.