The inevitable has finally happened, as the Minnesota Vikings are set to name Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer as their head coach, according to ESPN’s Chris Mortenson:
Mike Zimmer and Vikings are moving toward a deal, hoping to complete negotiations by today, per league sources.
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) January 15, 2014
Vikings are hiring Mike Zimmer as their HC, per league source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 15, 2014
The Vikings have hired Mike Zimmer as their new head coach.
— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) January 15, 2014
Congratulations to a guy that really deserves it. Really happy for Mike Zimmer. #Vikings
— Lindsay Patterson (@lindzpatterson) January 15, 2014
This comes after weeks of deliberating and carefully analyzing a host of candidates, but not long after the Vikings’ search for a new head coach began, Zimmer was identified as a top target by General Manager Rick Spielman.
Everyone knows Mike Zimmer is more deserving to be an NFL head coach than most candidates, including Jay Gruden, who was just named the Washington Redskins head coach.
Year after year, he’s continued to watch younger, hot-shot coordinators like Gruden get jobs while Zimmer is left to wonder why he’s not getting that chance.
But no more, as he’s finally getting his shot to be a head coach in the greatest sports league there is.
The Bengals are now expected to name linebackers coach Paul Guenther as the next defensive coordinator. Guenther is under contract to the Bengals for the 2014 season, so he can’t leave to join Zimmer’s staff unless Marvin Lewis agrees to let him go.
Guenther has received a lot of credit for his work with Pro Bowl linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who’s risen from undrafted rookie to one of the NFL’s best linebackers in just two years in the league.