Today marks two weeks from the moment that the Vikings announced their decision to move on from head coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman. There was a bit of a frenzy in the early stages of the search as other teams looking to fill coaching and front office voids began requesting interviews with candidates from around the league. Each time I checked Twitter and saw "the Broncos have requested and interview with..." or "the Bears have requested an interview with..." my anxiety rose. It was a few days before we started seeing any reports of the Vikings putting in requests for candidates.
Coming out of a fall/winter where college football coaches were jumping ship even before their current teams played bowl games, we all had this feeling that the process needed to be fast, that you had to strike while the iron was hot so that another team wouldn't beat you to the best option. There was even that goofy new rule in the NFL that would have allowed teams to start interviewing candidates two weeks before the end of the regular season, all of these elements created a sense of urgency for the hire.
It had been eight years since we had to worry about this sort of thing. None of us were completely sure how the process was performed in today's NFL.
But alas, we sit here two weeks later and not a single vacant head coach or general manager position has been filled. And to be honest, there's really no reason to read into the lengthy process. No reason to be worried that the Vikings haven't acted.
Remind yourself that the differences between the NFL and college football. College football is ALL about leverage, about striking while the iron is hot, about wooing a candidate away from one school and upping the ante to get them to commit. In the NFL, it's a two way street and nobody seems to be in a hurry to get moving.
Just as the Vikings are interviewing candidates to find the right fit for their organization, the candidates are interviewing the organizations looking for the right fit for them personally, maybe for the team that's ready to compete right away, or the team that has the best amenities. All of these factors bode well for the Minnesota Vikings.
As was noted last week, the Vikings have one of the more attractive landing spots for both positions and the process will play out on both fronts with the top candidates giving Minnesota a fair shake.
Mark Wild told us that "no stone will be left unturned" when it comes to their search to fill these positions. He said, "We're going to be deliberate, we're going to be thorough and we're going to get the kind of leaders that our players will want to follow and that will get us success on and off the field. That's how we're approaching it."
That appears to be what they're doing.
So as excited as we are to start building out the roster and balancing the salary cap for the 2022 season, stay patient. There's still two months before free agency in the NFL and three months before the draft. That's plenty of time for the right candidate to be hired, get affiliated and get working.
If jobs start filling in other markets, expect that anxiety to rise again, but don't worry...we're still in a good position here in Minnesota.