Earlier this week, the football world mourned the loss of former Minnesota Vikings and Arizona Cardinals head coach Dennis Green, who passed away following a heart attack at the age of 67. Green spent ten seasons as the head coach of the Vikings, and only had one sub-.500 season, that being his final year in 2001.
On ESPN's Sports Reporters, John Saunders used his "Parting Shot" to talk about some of Green's legacy, particularly his eye for talent. He talks about the offenses he built, including a couple of picks he used on wide receivers during his career. He also talks about his "coaching tree" and the success that some of the coaches that were a part of his staff went on to have after leaving Minnesota.
The loss of Dennis Green is a big one for every Vikings fan. For people like myself that pretty much missed the entire Bud Grant era (save for the one season where Les Steckel screwed everything up so badly that Bud was the only one that could fix it), Green is the best Vikings coach of our lifetimes. We all love Mike Zimmer, but as far as long-term success, he has a long way to go to catch Dennis Green.
Green clearly had an eye for talent, particularly on the offensive side of the ball, and had a very good run as the Vikings coach during an era when the team had to dig deeper for talent after the loss of so many draft picks thanks to "that" trade. His departure from Minnesota may have gotten a little ugly, but nobody can deny that he brought a lot of good times and happy memories to fans of this team when he was the head coach.
Once again, we would like to send our condolences to the family and friends of Dennis Green in their time of loss.