Kyle Rudolph is all-in for the Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl on Feb. 1, 2018, unless the Vikings make it to Super Bowl LII, which is scheduled three days later.
The Vikings tight end was one of several players on Monday night to attend U.S. Bank Stadium, the site of Super Bowl LII, to announce an innovative and interactive competition that is designed to celebrate modern farmers.
Current and former players will be paired with a farmer, forming eight teams of two players to compete in four challenges that exemplify "core principles of the NFL and modern farming: strength, endurance, intelligence and coordination" on a course that will be built at the University of Minnesota.
The first four events are:
- Milk pipe puzzle
- Tractor tire change
- Hay bale backup
- Drone drop
The top two teams will advance to a fifth event, the "big feed run," to determine the winner of the Farm Bowl Trophy.
Hall of Famer Jerome Bettis, former Vikings and Packers receiver Greg Jennings and former Ravens and Rams offensive lineman Jason Brown were announced as participants who will join Rudolph, who tweeted that he still has his mind on another bowl despite recently visiting a farm to prepare for the Farm Bowl.
The Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl is a collaboration designed to inspire the next generation of young leaders to consider careers in food and agriculture as part of the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee's programming. It will showcase "the intricacies and challenges of modern agriculture, testing the skills of professional football players on the farm."
"Super Bowl LII offers an exciting stage to convey the importance of farming to feeding the world, and to show how Land O'Lakes' member owners are impacting the entire food chain, farm to fork, from our iconic butter brand and far beyond," said Chris Policinski, President and CEO of Land O'Lakes, Inc. "Less than two percent of the population touches farming and, as the voice of the farmer, we feel an obligation to tell their important story."
Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee CEO Maureen Bausch said the Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl "is a great example of how one of Minnesota's most storied organizations is leaning in to tell the stories of the Bold North."
"The hard work of farming, food and agricultural professionals are central to many Minnesota communities," Bausch continued. "Land O'Lakes, which works with thousands of farmers across the United States, is the perfect host to merge these two very different worlds – football and farming – for an entertaining and inspiring event."
Youth-wellness initiative GENYOUth students will participate with farmers and football personalities in various ways. Off the field, the experience will educate and empower students to champion nutrition and agriculture.
"What truly makes the Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl so unique is that it empowers youth to see firsthand the important work of farmers. This initiative is invaluable for helping youth understand and appreciate how farming and agriculture nourishes them from farm to fork, while inspiring interest in nutrition and modern agriculture careers," said Alexis Glick, chief executive officer of GENYOUth. "As a mom, the Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl truly resonates with my belief that we all need to be passionate about ensuring a healthy future for our children."
The announcement coincided with the kick-off for the Fuel Up to Play 60 initiative's national Student Ambassador Summit, which is welcoming more than 180 students — and their teachers — from 44 states for a four-day event in Minneapolis this week.
Vikings Anthony Barr, Adam Thielen, Trae Waynes and Kai Forbath joined Rudolph at U.S. Bank Stadium to welcome the ambassadors.
Fans can follow all the Land O'Lakes Farm Bowl action at thefarmbowl.com.
About Land O'Lakes, Inc.
Land O'Lakes, Inc., one of America's premier agribusiness and food companies, is a member-owned cooperative with industry-leading operations that span the spectrum from agricultural production to consumer foods. With 2016 annual sales of $13.2 billion, Land O'Lakes is one of the nation's largest cooperatives, ranking 209 on the Fortune 500. Building on a legacy of more than 96 years of operation, Land O'Lakes today operates some of the most respected brands in agribusiness and food production including LAND O LAKES® Dairy Foods, Purina Animal Nutrition and WinField® United. The company does business in all 50 states and more than 60 countries. Land O'Lakes, Inc. corporate headquarters are located in Arden Hills, Minn.
About Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee
The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee is a private, non-profit corporation formed to plan and execute Super Bowl LII. For more information visit *www.mnsuperbowl.com and follow @mnsuperbowl2018 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.*
GENYOUth empowers students to create a healthier future for themselves and their peers by convening a network of private and public partners to raise funds for youth wellness initiatives that bolster healthy, high-achieving students, schools and communities nationwide. We believe that all students are change-agents, who deserve the opportunity to identify and lead innovative solutions that positively impact nutrition, physical activity, and student success. For more information about GENYOUth, visit: www.genyouthnow.org.