It did not take long for the Minnesota Vikings to dish out some punishment in Sunday's game with the Arizona Cardinals.
In fact, they managed to do so before kick-off. However, the victim was not a rival Cardinals player, but an innocent audio technician who paid a heavy price for an error of judgement.
Fox Sports employee Bernie Beaudry ran across the front of the Vikings' tunnel, completely unaware that hordes of hulking Minnesota players were about to charge their way onto the field.
The result was a predictable one, Beaudry was blindsided, being clipped by defensive end Brian Robison before taking the full force of the defensive tackle Linval Joseph, who is 1.93 metres tall and weighs 147kg
Beaudry was sent crashing to the turf but, while his glasses are no longer of much use to him, his injures thankfully only amounted to a few cuts on his nose.
"I've had a lot of close calls, but this cancels out all of that. I should have peeked."
Joseph said: "I was really surprised somebody was there. I run out of the tunnel plenty of times and I've never seen anybody run across before. I'm glad he's okay. Tell him I'm sorry."
Robison, upon being informed Beaudry was still able to carry out his duties for the entire game, replied: "Good for him. Tough guy."
The Vikings, who ran out 30-24 victors, are reportedly planning to present an autographed picture of the incident to Beaudry prior to their meeting with the Dallas Cowboys at U.S. Bank Stadium on December 1.