On Monday, Joe Kapp, the Minnesota Vikings’ quarterback in Super Bowl Iv, died at the age of 85. Kapp’s alma mater, the University of California, told news sources that he had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for the last 15 years and was residing in an assisted living facility.
The family made plans to send his brain to UC San Francisco researchers to study the potential connection between his dementia and hits he took to the head with his punishing playing style.
A standout signal-caller in both the National Football League and Canadian Football League, Kapp played 12 seasons of professional football altogether, most notably three campaigns for Minnesota in the 1960s.
After a stellar collegiate career at Cal that was capped by an appearance in the 1959 Rose Bowl, Mr. Kapp went on to star in Canada before making it to the NFL. He took over for Fran Tarkenton in Minnesota and led the Vikings to a Super Bowl appearance in the 1969 season before losing to Kansas City.
Mr. Kapp is the only quarterback to lead his team to a Rose Bowl, Grey Cup and Super Bowl. He still holds a share of the NFL single-game record with seven touchdown passes, in a 1969 win over Baltimore.
Mr. Kapp was survived by his second wife, Jennifer Kapp; four children and six grandchildren. His first wife, Marcia Kapp, died in 2005.
“Joe’s toughness and competitive spirit defined the Vikings teams of his era, and his tenacity and leadership were respected by teammates and opponents alike. We mourn Joe’s loss with his family, friends, and Vikings fans around the world.”