The Zimmer File: What are the Vikings getting?

Author:
Updated:
Original:

Who is Mike Zimmer and what will he bring to Minnesota as the newest head coach in franchise history? The Vikings reportedly hired Zimmer Tuesday morning.

Zimmer, 57, has made a bevy of stops during his 20-year coaching career in NFL.

  • 1994-99: Cowboys defensive backs coach
  • 2000-06: Cowboys defensive coordinator
  • 2007: Falcons defensive coordinator
  • 2008-13: Bengals defensive coordinator

In 2009, life hit Zimmer hard with the death of his wife, Vikki. She died of natural causes. He found solace in the NFL, and he coached the Cincinnati defense just days after her death.

Sports Illustrated's Doug Farrar notes how Zimmer has been a master at turning mediocre defenses into upper-echelon defenses.

Zimmer had been the Bengals’ defensive coordinator since 2008. In the year before, Cincinnati’s defense ranked 17th in Football Outsiders’ opponent-adjusted metrics; they’ve never finished lower than 17th since and ranked fifth in 2013. He did a similar turnaround with the Dallas Cowboys defense from 2000 through ’06 after spending 1994 through ’99 as the team’s defensive backs coach.

Last August, Hall of Fame head coach Bill Parcells, who helped groom Zimmer in Dallas, put him in the same class as Bill Belichick – the best coach in the NFL, according to most.

“You want my prototype? It’s the Belichicks and Zimmers. They grew up with it, they get it. He got it at a young age," Parcells told the Cincinnati Enquirer. "Mike is a little high-strung, a little bit like me, but I don’t know what they are waiting for with this guy because he has leadership qualities and he can coach.”

According to the Star Tribune, Zimmer's daughter Corri explained how excited she was for her father via a Facebook post.

“I’m overwhelmed with emotion. Over the last 6 years I have grown such a love for the Bengals organization. Since then the Bengals have actually become a team that is taken seriously and i have watched my dad turned their Defensive into something great. With that being said I have also watched my dad be passed up for head coaching jobs year after year after year when he clearly deserved it. I am in tears as I am finally able to say that he is getting what he worked his BUTT off for all these years. It’s about time … and I am still in shock as I’m saying this … but my dad is officially the HEAD COACH of the Minnesota Vikings!!!!!!!!”

Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis says Zimmer is a man that knows how to deal with different personalities.

“Zim does a great job of identifying who to push and when,” Lewis said, via Bengals.com. “He helps me by being the guy who puts his foot up their butt, getting them moving in the right direction so I don’t have to be the one to do it all the time.”

Former NFL players turned ESPN analysts Mark Brunell and Antonio Pierce gave their thoughts on what Zimmer brings to the Vikings.

[preserve][/preserve]

Next Up

DirecTV

DirecTV subscribers could lose KARE 11 on Tuesday

A new contract needs to be agreed upon by 6 p.m. Tuesday.

prison, Rush City cell block

Inmate from Rush City prison dies after COVID-19 diagnosis

The man is the fifth incarcerated person in Minnesota to die from COVID-19.

ambulance

Belle Plaine man dies after duck boat capsizes on lake

One man was found sitting on the overturned boat while another man was in the water.

Screen Shot 2020-11-29 at 4.59.51 PM

Watch: Adam Thielen watches end of Vikings/Panthers just like all of us

The Vikings receiver looked like a true fan on Sunday afternoon.

Chad Beebe

Chad Beebe's roller-coaster fourth-quarter keeps Vikings playoff hopes alive

A muffed punt and a game-winning touchdown helped defeat the Panthers on Sunday afternoon.

127266986_2766399800267634_3587849554502438415_n

West-central MN cops warn kids to stay off ice, or 'Santa won't come'

This comes amid repeated ice warnings across the state.

covid-19, coronavirus, PPE

Nov. 29 COVID-19 update: 57 deaths, nearly 9,000 more cases

Nearly 100,000 tests were included in Sunday's report.

jim ramstad

Watch former Rep. Jim Ramstad's memorial service online

The ceremony will be live-streamed for the public on Sunday.

EDL1LeKXsAEeH32

How high can Rashod Bateman go in the 2021 NFL Draft?

The Gophers star receiver has plenty of praise heading into next April.

TCF Bank Stadium

15 more from Gopher football team test positive for COVID-19

That brings the total number of cases from this outbreak to 40.

Teddy Bridgewater

5 questions for Vikings-Panthers Week 12 NFC battle

The Vikings welcome Teddy Bridgewater back to U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday.

police lights

Man, 21, in custody after Albert Lea police officer shot in the chest

The officer was able to drive to an emergency room.

Related