From what we have gathered from the work of Star Tribune reporters and other national sources, the Vikings have interviewed four head coaching candidates already and could interview as many as four more this week. That meets the definition of thorough outlined by GM Rick Spielman after the organization fired Leslie Frazier last week. It’s hard to say exactly where all eight of these potential targets stand — and others such as Broncos coordinators Adam Gase (offense) and Jack Del Rio (defense) could emerge. But here is a brief recap of why these eight would make sense to be the next coach of the Vikings. MICHAEL RAND




Current position

Interview status

Assessing his candidacy

Darrell Bevell

Seahawks offensive coordinator

Happened this past weekend

Has done wonders in Seattle working with young QB Russell Wilson, making him an attractive target. But his ties to the previous Brad Childress staff could make him a hard sell to the public.

Dan Quinn

Seahawks defensive coordinator

Happened this past weekend

Took over as coordinator with Seattle this year and oversees the top-ranked defense in the NFL, but he might not have enough experience to land a head job this year.

Todd Bowles

Cardinals defensive coordinator

Happened Monday

Cardinals had the top-ranked run defense in the NFL this year, and Bowles also has a 2-1 stint as interim coach with the Dolphins in 2011 on his résumé.

Ray Horton

Browns defensive coordinator

Happened Tuesday

Browns had a top-10 defense in terms of yards allowed in 2013. Was a respected coordinator in Arizona for two years before that and was a candidate for their head coaching vacancy last year before the job went to Bruce Arians.

Jay Gruden

Bengals offensive coordinator

Happening Thursday

Has previous head coaching experience at lower levels of pro football. Has been OC for three consecutive playoff appearances and helped develop QB Andy Dalton, but his offense sputtered in a third consecutive playoff one-and-done.

Mike Zimmer

Bengals defensive coordinator

Reportedly happening this week

Has been an NFL defensive coordinator since 2000 and appears to be well-respected by his players despite having a no-nonsense approach. His style could be what the Vikings are looking for.

Greg Roman

49ers offensive coordinator

None, though Vikings reportedly are interested

Gets major kudos for helping develop a dynamic offense that blends the playmaking ability of young QB Colin Kaepernick with a strong running attack.

Ken Whisenhunt

Chargers offensive coordinator

None, though Vikings reportedly are interested

The only candidate on the list who has been a permanent head coach in the NFL, where he led the Cardinals to a Super Bowl appearance. Also won a Super Bowl as Steelers OC and has revamped the Chargers offense.