I know that the team just won its second game of the year, but realistically we Vikings fans have to know that several coaching changes will come sometime in the next 12 months or less. I thought that it might be good to lay out some thoughts about how to select a better NFL head coach well in advance.
1) Beware of candidates who claim to be able to turn an average player into a superstar. Be especially weary of a coach who often refers to high draft picks as examples of how well he coached them to success. Although most quality coaches can and should be able to get great results out of a scrap heap player once in a while (usually with a player or two in the supporting cast rather than, say the starting QB), the big plan cannot hinge on coaching up one or two pet projects into key starters. The better head coaches have better eyes for talent and whether a player is overvalued or undervalued. in this era, the NFL head coach must be able to evaluate talent, especially QBs.
2) Beware of any head coaching candidate who says something like, "_______ doesn't work in the NFL." Just last night, we saw one of AP's better runs on a toss sweep, which a former coach laughed off in a presser as something that doesn't work in the NFL. He said similar things about single-wing formations and the spread and even SHOTGUN...while better coaches used those sorts of plays, formations and schemes to beat the Vikings.
3) Beware of coaches who are too dependent upon a particular system, especially one that is widely used. That is an acceptable behavior for a coordinator, but the NFL head coach really ought to be a CEO strategist and a leader of people. Dick Vermeil was a great HC who was comfortable delegating and leading. By contrast, Mike Martz had a system and wanted full control and credit for everything. Todd Haley's first move was to trade future HoFer Tony Gonzalez to the Falcons for a 5th round pick because he didn't have a place for Tony in the system." Unless a team is planning to make a bold change (from i-form run heavy to pass-happy spread or run and shoot, for example), the better coach will probably have a plan for most of the existing talent on the roster.