Discipline and defense. Mike Zimmer, the new head coach of the Minnesota Vikings, will bring each of these championship aspects to the team.
Along with hard nosed football comes fire and attitude. Zimmer is known as one of those coaches that is not afraid to light a fire under his players if they are not working hard enough.
The Vikings hiring of Zimmer is going to pay off and here’s why:
1. Players will get direction under Zimmer
On the field issues plagued the Vikings under Leslie Frazier. Whether it was stupid penalties, players not knowing what was going on, or botched play calling, the Vikings were among the worst in the NFL in each of those categories. Zimmer won’t let that sort of stuff fly as a head coach. His experience and success with three prior NFL teams as a defensive coordinator proves he’s a leader with a high compassion for the game.
Next season, the Vikings will improve in these categories and the head shaking from the fans will at least begin to diminish.
2. Zimmer will revamp the defense
The Vikings ran a strange defense under Alan Williams. They ranked among the worst in the NFL in passing defense and there were times when the secondary was just downright awful. Zimmer is creative and runs an aggressive 4-3 style defense. In Cincinnati, Zimmer took the Bengals’ defense to high levels after being one of the worst in the NFL. He will do the same with the Vikings because he mixes things up.
3. Zimmer will hire experienced coordinators
Just because Zimmer is a defensive mastermind doesn’t mean that the Vikings will become completely about defense. The team will likely adapt to Zimmer’s strategies because they are rebuilding, but guys like Cordarelle Patterson and Adrian Peterson, two of the most explosive players in the NFL, will not be forgotten. Zimmer will bring in a top-notch offensive coordinator to work with the star offensive players, and hopefully to develop a new quarterback and offensive strategy into the system. Zimmer has been around long enough to attract quality coaches.
4. Players love playing for Zimmer
Zimmer gets high praise from former players he’s coached. The Vikings didn’t play inspired football, probably because they couldn’t relate to Frazier as well as they would have liked. Zimmer brings inspiration and rewards his players for working hard. The Vikings desperately need a coach like this and they are getting it.
For now I am going to give the Zimmer hiring a B, but I would like to think that grade will improve. Zimmer deserved a chance to be an NFL head coach long ago, and this is definitely a win for the Vikings.
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