The Cincinnati Bengals have already lost offensive coordinator Jay Gruden to the Washington Redskins, and this news came just a day after Gruden was reported to be the favorite for the Redskins vacancy. Defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer is held in even higher regard than Gruden, and it’s looking like the Bengals will lose both sought-after coordinators to head coaching vacancies. In fact, there’s a chance that Mike Zimmer gets hired by a team a day after being reported the favorite, as well.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the favorite for the Minnesota Vikings head coaching vacancy is Mike Zimmer, who is interviewing with the Tennessee Titans today after speaking with the Vikings yesterday. The Vikings have cast a very wide net in their head coaching search with the likes of Darrell Bevell also involved, but it looks like the organization is keying in on hiring a head coach with a background on defense. While the Vikings could use an offensive guru as their head coach due to a lack of a franchise quarterback, their defense is horrible. That’s mostly due to personnel issues, so it’s still interesting to see that a guy like Zimmer could replace Leslie Frazier, who is held in high regard for his prowess on defense.
At the end of the day, it’s all about finding the best candidate, and the Vikings should hire Zimmer if they truly believe that he is the best guy available for the gig. That said, the Vikings would definitely have to hire a strong offensive coordinator to pair with Zimmer, who is an excellent coach on defense but has an unknown amount of skill coaching offenses. As we have seen with head coaches like Ron Rivera, it’s false to say that you need a head coach with a background on offense to win.