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Vikings Have Asked Permission To Speak to Bengals' Gruden, Zimmer

The offensive and defensive coordinators for Cincinnati are hot commodities for teams looking for head coaches

The Vikings have asked to interview Mike Zimmer, pictured, and Jay Gruden.
The Vikings have asked to interview Mike Zimmer, pictured, and Jay Gruden.
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Jason LaCanfora tweeted out that the Vikings want to interview one Cincinnati coordinator:

And Albert Breer, just a little while later, tweeted that the Vikings want to interview the OTHER Cincinnati coordinator:

Of the two, both are good coordinators in their own right.  Jay Gruden, who has been the Cincinnati offensive coordinator since 2012, has improved in both his seasons as their OC.  They've gone from 12th to 3rd in points per game this season, and more importantly for Vikings fans, QB Andy Dalton has improved in both seasons, throwing for 4,200 yards and 33 TD's in 2013.

But the Law of Recency is kind of in play here, as the Bengals offense completely laid an egg in their Wild Card playoff loss to San Diego yesterday, and Dalton was particularly brutal.

As to Mike Zimmer, he's a guy that I've personally liked for several years now.   He's been a defensive coordinator in the NFL since 2000, and in his four of six seasons as the Bengals defensive coordinator, Cincinnati has had a top 10 scoring defense.  This season the they were a top five defense in almost every single statistical category.

You can make an argument for both an offensive or defensive minded coach.  On offense, the Vikings need someone who can groom a quarterback tat will get the Vikings to realize their potential on offense.  Adrian Peterson, Cordarrelle Patterson, Kyle Rudolph, and Greg Jennings make for a great nucleus that could do some serious damage, but they need a quarterback to make the engine hum.  Gruden has turned Dalton into a very good quarterback, and if the Vikings are determined to draft another Quarterback Of The Future in the 2014 draft, Gruden might be the guy that could take a lump of QB charcoal and turn him into a diamond.

On defense, the Vikings need a complete makeover, though, and an argument could be made that a defense that was juuuuuuuussssst a wee bit better than God Awful might have gotten them another five or six wins and into the playoffs.  Zimmer is a guy that seems to be the perfect candidate to do just that, as the Bengals defense was, shall we say...not good when he got there.  The Vikings need to get younger on the line and at linebacker, and they need to make some tough decisions on what to do with players that have been with the Vikings for a long time, and have a good track record with the team.  Zimmer would be an impartial guy that could make those decisions a lot easier than an offensive minded coach, and could get the defense righted a lot quicker.

And if we're applying the same Law of Recency to Zimmer, the Cincinnati defense played well yesterday, but kept getting put into one bad situation with another by the Bengals offense, and eventually just couldn't hold the dam back anymore.

If it was me, and Gruden or Zimmer were my only two choices, I'd take Zimmer.  but that's just me.  What say you, Vikings fans--yay or nay on either Gruden or Zimmer?