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Zim Tzu Needs a Dress Rehearsal, Too

Even the boss needs to get ready for the regular season

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Minnesota Vikings Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

No one really likes going through the motions. You’re faking it, people know you’re faking it, and you know that they know that you’re faking it.

But when you’re Zim Tzu, you’re not allowed to fake it, even when everyone around you is. You have to go full speed all the time, every day. Faking it is something suburban housewives do every other Friday night, and they’ve been doing it far better than anyone for over 100 years. That is something you can’t compete with, my friend, nor do you want to. No sir, you only know one way, and that’s full speed ahead.

Because you are Zim Tzu: First Of His Name, High Septon Of Mankato Eagan, Lord Of The Iron Range And Twin Cities, and Warden Of The North.

And though you might think the Zim Tzu press conference is one big fake production, it isn’t.* Zim Tzu just happens to speak at a level the rest of us fakers can’t comprehend,** so his words must be interpreted and decoded for the masses.***

*It’s just a press conference, not a Papal Conclave.

**Seriously, there’s no decoding. Just me bullshitting and making things up.

***Can’t emphasize enough that this is all bullshit. Hopefully funny, yet still bullshit.

And this is our calling, or Reason For Living.* We take Mike Zimmer’s actual press conference quotes,** and decode them into something we can all use, every day, to live a better life. A life with no faking allowed.***

*If you live for these, seriously get a life. Unless you’re a beat writer and you cover these for a living. You have a valid excuse. Everyone else? You need serious help, man.

**Only thing that’s legit in this whole piece are Zimmer’s actual presser quotes before my 100% bullshit.

***I’m a fake writer, so....yeah.

No opening statement, so we dove right in to questions.

Q: What have you liked most about Ben Gedeon?

What Zim Tzu said: The thing I like the most about him is he’s an old-school kind of guy. He’s tough, he finds the football, gets off blocks well. He’s probably a Mike linebacker, but we’re just trying to get the guys in there that can play, and I figure if we’re playing 30 percent base, it’s a chance to get him in the game more. But he’s done a good job in there and like all rookies, he made some mistakes, so we’re trying to clean those up. But he’s pretty conscientious about that.

What Zim Tzu meant: Ben came from Michigan as a middle linebacker, and had never played another position. We moved him outside, and now he’s starting. I’m not saying those other guys suck, I’m just saying a rookie that’s never played on the outside won the starting job over guys in the NFL that have played that position their entire career.

Q: Do you need another game to decide who starts at that position?

What Zim Tzu said: Yeah, probably. This will be a good week to get these guys in there one more time and finish the process.

What Zim Tzu meant: Fuck no. I’m trying save my fuckin’ eyesight, and I’ve seen enough of the Will competition.

Q: How do you think communication was between linebackers last week, especially the first teamers?

What Zim Tzu said: I don’t think the communication was an issue at all. They quick-counted us a few times. We’re used to being out here and our offense really hasn’t been going on any quick counts. So we’ve been a little slow lining up, we’ve been a little bit slow getting our hand in the dirt and getting things out. But the calls were fine, there was no issues.

What Zim Tzu meant: I thought our linebackers did a fantastic job of looking back at our secondary and yelling ‘HERE THEY COME’ when they missed yet another fuckin’ tackle. And our secondary did a great job of not hurting the ball carrier en route to the end zone. Excellent job.

Q: You’ve talked about how the team has been putting in new concepts this preseason. How much do you think that factored in on Sunday, and time to maybe scale back and get to what you’re good at now?

What Zim Tzu said: Yeah, a little bit. That’s part of it. The two touchdowns they had, that wasn’t anything where there was some funky call or something like that.

What Zim Tzu meant: Yes, the concept of ‘let’s score some fucking touchdowns’ was a bridge too far for the first team offense. And the concept of ‘how about we toss a fucking shutout’ was a bridge too far for the first team defense. This week we’ll work on the ‘let’s just get a goddamn first down’ for the offense, and on defense it will be ‘a field goal isn’t all that bad, fuckers’.

Q: Now that Rashod Hill has been playing both sides of the offensive line, how do you think he’s been handling that transition?

What Zim Tzu said: I don’t think it’s so much transition. I had a talk with him today, but it’s about being consistent with the things he’s doing. If he does it the right way with the proper technique, he’s pretty good. And then there are times where he gets off the reservation and does this one time, does that one time. He really has to hone in on being disciplined with his technique.

What Zim Tzu meant: I’m so happy that he’s not T.J. Clemmings or Matt Kalil I don’t even care if he tries to put a guy in a figure four leglock, because Rashod Hill, professional wrestler, is still better than the composted dog shit we had for tackles last year. Except Jake Long, until his Achilles exploded.

Q: Do you feel like you’ve settled in on your starting offensive line, and who some of the rotational players will be?

What Zim Tzu said: I believe so.

What Zim Tzu meant: I bet Alex Boone will be quotable sumbitch when I bench him.

Q: It was a year ago that Teddy Bridgewater went down with injury. From your viewpoint, how has the franchise handled the situation considering everything you guys went through?

What Zim Tzu said: I think we handled it well as far as the things that we had to do. I still think the trade was the right trade for us. Obviously, it was a freak thing that happened with Teddy, but I don’t know, I guess you always handle it the best way you can and try to figure it out. I think Rick [Spielman] did a good job.

What Zim Tzu meant: After terrorists planted a pipe bomb in Teddy’s knee, we were on our heels, and Rick Spielman made a good move to keep this team competitive by trading for Sam Bradford. And it wasn’t Sam’s fault the o-line suffered more casualties than Custer at Little Big Horn, so chill. Besides, if we didn’t trade for Sam, I’d be up here right know polishing my knob trying to convince you that Jay Cutler does, in fact, give a shit, and we could win the fucking division with him. Jay Fucking Cutler, backed up by Case Keenum. Jesus, I’d rather dissolve myself in a vat of acid.

Q: When looking at the quarterback situations around the league are you happy about yours no matter how it plays out?

What Zim Tzu said: Yeah. Yeah, I feel good about it.

What Zim Tzu meant: When Teddy comes back I’m gonna snort some blow off a hooker’s ass I’ll be so happy.

Q: How do you feel Teddy has progressed over the past few weeks?

What Zim Tzu said: Well he’s progressed a lot. I don’t watch him every single day. He’ll be off the sides while we’re practicing. The reports I get are all positive. He knows where he’s at and knows where he’s got to get it. I think he’s progressing well. I think it’s a year today that it happened maybe and I know that he’s all in trying to get ready to play.


Q: What do you need from him to put him into a practice setting?

What Zim Tzu said: Well, he’s got to be able to protect himself on the field and be able to do the movements that are required by his position.

What Zim Tzu meant: We have to make sure terrorists have not planted another bomb in his knee. Fucking ISIS.

Q: Is he not there yet?

What Zim Tzu said: No, when he’s there he’ll practice.


Q: How is Jayron Kearse performing?

What Zim Tzu said: It’s still a work in progress, really. Because he had some bad plays in there, too, and he had some good plays. He came and saw me the other day about some of the things he needs to work on. I talked to him about basically the same things I’ve told you guys, being able to come under control in the open field. That’s where the tall guys on the back end have the issues. It’s all about accelerating to the spot, dropping your butt, getting under control. Then when you go to tackle, getting back out of control. If you try to go without getting under control, more than likely you’re going to miss the tackle.

What Zim Tzu meant: Jayron has mastered the art of missing a tackle, which has been a hallmark of the Minnesota Vikings secondary since the mythical days of Wasswa Serwanga. If we can give players All Pro votes for missed tackles, Jayron’s going to the fuckin’ Hall of Fame, man.

Q: Have you started game planning for New Orleans?

What Zim Tzu said: No.

What Zim Tzu meant: FUCK THOSE GUYS

Q: When do you typically start?

What Zim Tzu said: We’ll wait until after the cuts.

What Zim Tzu meant: FUCK THOSE GUYS