The New GM and the Vikings Head Coach Search Developments

I just want to pass on a few observations.

First, just to get this out of the way, I was eating out and looked at a couple tables across from me and there's Sarah Palin! Pretty cool to see any celebrity type or known person! All meal long she is facing my way and, of course, breathing, laughing loudly, and talking louder. I'm like twenty feet from her.

No big deal.

No big deal?

Come to find out she tested positive for Covid and then, once she knew she was a spreader, came out dining! All her arm waving over there pretty much pushed the virus right into my face. As I look back on it I cannot help thinking she was thrilling to trying to get people infected. She made the waiter bend down right next to her face and spoke like six inches from his mouth and nose. She even grabbed his arm and held him in place while she kept yapping into his face. Thanks bunches, Sarah!

So, if I don't post for a while... or maybe ever again... you'll know why.


I love the new GM! As many of you know, I granted the Wilfs permission to hire anyone they wanted. It was sort of a trick. They said they wanted a great communicator and I was quietly testing them to see if that was just talk or if they meant it. As it turns out, they meant it! Kwesi Odofo-Mensah is incredibly impressive and listening to his viewpoints and communications style is a joy. So far so good Wilfs! Did I say good? I meant so far so great!!!

The coaching search is also going FANTASTIC! Now, how can that be when no one is hired yet?

Four ways.

One, we have avoided interviewing college coaches. They have an epic bad fail rate in the NFL. Wise move to avoid them (Harbaugh being an absolute exception for obvious reasons.)

Two, we've avoided the "How much credit do they deserve candidates?" I'm talking about candidates whose coaches are strong or extremely strong in their same areas of expertise. For instance, Eric Bienemy. We know he is the KC OC. We know Andy Reid is a brilliant offensive mind. If we removed Bienemy from KC, would they be the same? A little worse? Better??? Who knows. Is Bienemy 10% of the KC offense? 15%? 45%? No one except Reid and Bienemy know for sure. Even they likely deceive themselves about it.

Another one like that is Byron Leftwich. Do you think Bruce Arians lets Byron do anything he wants with the Bucs offense? Also, it isn't like Leftwich developed Tom Brady, right?

You hire one of these foggy vague who-knows-what and you could end up with a glorified coaches lackey who fetched his laundry.

However, there is one exception. Kevin O'Connell of the Rams. He was an OC before he became the OC for Sean McVay, true, but only for one year and he guided the Redskins from a 28th ranking at 299.7 yards per game to a 31st ranking at 274.7 yards per game. So, he was an OC without McVay but not a successful one. Obviously, there could be many other factors involved other than O'Connell's coaching. Still, I am a bit leery. He took over the #7 offense after 2019, led them to #11 in 2020, and back to #7 this year.

So the addition of O'Connell -- or the "O'Connell Effect" if you will -- is either negligible or, arguably, slightly negative. His main selling point is probably the fact Cooper Kupp led the NFL in catches, yards, and TDs. He found ways to beat double coverage and to get Kupp wide open frequently though one may argue many defenses did not take Kupp as seriously as Jefferson. If O'Connell did that for Kupp it is tantalizing what he could do for Jefferson. No disrespect for Kupp!

Three, Nathanial Hackett was hired by the Broncos. Yes! Why YES? I thought he was the weakest candidate. He was kicked out of Jacksonville. He was in a leadership time share with LeFleur and Rodgers. Even with them he led the Packers offense to a lesser performance than Zimmer's offenses the past two years. So... why? Why would we hire him when we do not know how much credit to give him for making the Rodgers attack slightly inferior to the Kirk Cousins attack?

Answer: We didn't hire him. Yes! Wonderful!

Four, Dan Quinn pulled out of Head Coach contention. This is interesting and a good thing for so many reasons. Quinn was the weakest of the "previously failed" head coach candidates. His overall background, his work as a DC, and his HC record were all inferior to Mike Zimmer. Why terminate Zimmer and replace him with a pale watered down version of Zimmer? It made no sense.

It is fascinating that he pulled out of contention after interviewing for 6 locations and with two of those positions filled. You don't interview unless you'd take the job. So he must think the 4 remaining teams have no interest in him. That includes Minnesota. That's great!!!

The other reason Quinn not becoming the Vikings' next HC or an HC anywhere is so cool is that the Cowboys are "stuck" with him. Now, yes, he did a pretty good job with the Cowboys but not that good. They gave up a ton of yards and improved via a rookie sensation and a wealth of turnovers. It is hard to repeat getting high turnovers year after year. Not quite impossible but quite hard. Also, his D was wildly stupidly insanely dumbly penalty-prone, many of them pre-snap and that is on the coaching. (Which, by the way is why I am not rooting for Kellen Moore. That and his extreme youth.)

If Quinn was hired away I have nearly zero doubt that Zimmer would have become the Cowboys next DC. Now, I don't want Zimmer to leave coaching and he will be a huge success anywhere he goes and I do wish him the best. But not with the Cowboys or the Packers! Noooooo! Luckily, it looks like that will not happen. At least yet. As much as Quinn improved the Dallas D, Zimmer would take them to Top 10 year 1 and Top 5 the next half dozen years after that.

The Cowboys forced to keep Quinn is a blow on the Cowboys and a relief to Vikings fans.

Kwesi Odofo-Mensah may have other targets to interview -- even Bienemy, yuck -- but, of the current 6 left standing, here is how I rank them:

1. DeMeco Ryans

2. Jonathan Gannon

3. Raheem Morris

4. Todd Bowles

5. Kevin O'Connell

6. Kellen Moore

The first three would thrill me. The next three would concern me for various reasons (age, performance, age/performance). Bowles is a bit too old -- 58. That sounds bad but, if we are going to risk this HC change and we already have, why do it with a 1 in 6 chance of it succeeding and, if it succeeds, Bowles lasts 7 or 8 years whereas with the others the change, if it works, pays off for 20 or more years? It is essentially the same betting risk with a triple to quintuple pay-out differential.

As I think about that, I think I would put Bowles last on the list. Also, O'Connell pays out 9 extra years over Morris and Moore, what, pays out 12 extra years over Morris. 22 years and 25 years over Bowles! You know, if they work out Bill Belichick perfect.

Keep in mind, the most successful 2000 and after coach in the NFC North -- and only one was successful if you judge solely by Super Bowl wins -- was Mike McCarthy. 1 out of 16 head coaches. And, really, how sad is it when we say McCarthy was best of the bunch and we are sitting here hoping for someone as good as McCarthy?

Good luck, Mr. Odofo-Mensah and the Wilfs! You are doing great so far but the mission is far from accomplished.

This FanPost was created by a registered user of The Daily Norseman, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of the site. However, since this is a community, that view is no less important.