The Minnesota Vikings search for their next—not necessarily ‘new’ offensive coordinator—dominated the conversation during the end-of-year press conference by Mike Zimmer.
“I’m looking at all kinds of options [at offensive coordinator] … I think Kevin [Stefanski’s] a really good coach, and a really smart guy,” Zimmer said. “I thought he did a good job during those three weeks during a really tough situation. It’s fair to the organization, and to our fans, that we take our time and look at everybody.”
Zimmer said he believes he is better situated now than he was last year when it comes to asking the right questions toward understanding the next offensive coordinator’s vision for run-pass balance.
“I’ve learned a lot about the questions, and the interview process. I don’t think I asked enough questions about what we were trying to get done with everybody we talked to [last season],” he said. “Obviously, I want to be able to run the football, and play-action pass, because I think that’s the most effective way to affect a defense.”
The team’s identity and philosophy were lost from the outset of the 2018 season in part because of the sudden death of offensive line coach Tony Sparano, who really helped set
into place each individual lineman’s role in the running game, Zimmer said.
“Quite honestly, the death of Sparano really kind of threw things into kind of a downward spiral. He was a type-A personality, really helped orchestrate the running game, and was a strong voice with me in the room.”
When asked if the reports of him mulling over resigning were indeed true, Zimmer rehashed his swipe of the President’s favorite catch phrase.
“That’s totally, 100 percent, hashtag ‘fake news’, or whatever they call it,” Zimmer said.
The team’s mentality, from the entire coaching staff down through the entire roster needs a significant change, he finished.
“We used to have a chip on our shoulder. This year, it wasn’t there. We’re going to get it back.”
Joe Perovich is an on-air announcer and writer at KFAN, and can be reached on Twitter (@JoePerovich) or by email (JoePerovich@iheartmedia.com)