Discouraged Zimmer almost didn't interview for Vikings job
- Blog Post by: Michael Rand
- June 4, 2014 - 8:47 AM
This came out a few days ago, so pardon us for being a little late to the party. But upon having this story about Vikings coach Mike Zimmer sent to us by a couple of people, we found it worthy of sharing even now.
Speaking at an NFL career-development symposium over the weekend in Philadelphia, Zimmer talked about the hopeless feeling he was getting from constantly interviewing but never getting head coaching jobs:
"I almost didn't go (on the second interview with Minnesota), yeah. I was so disappointed," Zimmer, 57, who nabbed the Vikings job after that interview, told FOX Sports. "It was like, 'Why even do this?' It was to that point. I figured I was getting too old. It thought, 'Forget this.'
"But I talked to a couple of people who said, 'Hey, you've gotta go. What are you doing?'"
Later on in the Fox Sports piece, we find this passage:
Zimmer never changed. For years, he was considered too brash during interviews. He once told an owner the 31 teams that didn't hire him would one day regret passing over him, and he believes that statement came off the wrong way. Zimmer wondered whether he should tone down his personality until he heard New York Giants president and CEO John Mara and Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan speak at last year's symposium. Both men said they look for candidates with conviction, so Zimmer maintained his approach during his first few interviews this offseason.
When that didn't work in Tennessee, he was left with Minnesota. It was a place he didn't think he'd want to coach. But when he went for his second interview with the club -- the one he almost turned down -- he realized it was a much better fit than he expected.
The phrase "it was a place he didn't think he'd want to coach" was not a direct quote, rather either a paraphrase from the author or a sentence gleaned from Zimmer's overall message. Still, this piece could be interesting to look back on as the season progresses and the years go by. We might end up talking about a coach who almost didn't come here but ended up having great success. Or we could be talking about a coach who had reservations, for whatever reason, and a fit that didn't work out.
Regardless, there is nothing wrong with his honesty. We just find it interesting.
© 2014 Star Tribune