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Vikings Special Teams Coach Brian Murphy Takes Job With Carolina Panthers

It doesn't appear that Brian Murphy wanted to wait for Leslie Frazier to make his announcement before he left the Vikings.

Murphy, who was rumored to be on the outs with the Vikings since the regular season ended, has left the Vikings to take the same job with the Carolina Panthers and their new head coach, Ron Rivera. The report comes from Judd Zulgad of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Murphy was named the Vikings' special teams coordinator just after the 2008 season ended, when then-coordinator Paul Ferraro moved on to become the linebackers coach for the St. Louis Rams. When one considers that the 2008 Minnesota Vikings' special teams were, historically, one of the worst special teams units in the history of the NFL, Murphy really had nowhere to go but up. He managed to get punter Chris Kluwe to focus more on directional kicking and hang time rather than just launching punts for distance all the time, but the kickoff coverage unit still wasn't terribly good.

The Vikings have interviewed Denver Broncos special teams coordinator Mike Priefer for the same position. To this point, I haven't seen any other names being tossed about for the job, so my guess is that he's the guy.

No announcements from Winter Park yet as far as coaching hirings or anything like that, so it appears that "today or tomorrow" is going to turn into "tomorrow" before we hear anything.