Page 2 of 2 Previous

Continued: Minnesota-born Trestman a rookie NFL head coach -- finally

  • Article by: RACHEL BLOUNT , Star Tribune
  • Last update: September 15, 2013 - 9:03 AM

“I liked what I was doing,’’ Trestman said. “I was focused on my family and on building a business. And then football found me again, with no intention. That’s when I thought, ‘This must be what I’m supposed to do.’’’

San Francisco coach George Seifert revived Trestman’s coaching career in 1995, starting a 10-year run in which Trestman and his quarterbacks flourished. As the 49ers offensive coordinator, he directed the highest-scoring offense in the league and laid the frame work for Jerry Rice to set a then-NFL record with 1,848 receiving yards that season. In Detroit, his instruction helped Scott Mitchell throw for 3,484 yards, then the second-highest total in franchise history. In Oakland, he coached the NFL’s most productive offense and helped Gannon, at age 37, earn honors as the NFL’s Most Valuable Player.

But his second act was no more stable than his first. Though he was lauded for his intellect, his attention to detail and his immersive work ethic, Trestman’s career stalled again in 2006, when his two-season run at North Carolina State ended with the coaching staff’s dismissal.

Disillusioned and angry, Trestman found himself contemplating the footprint he had left through his 51 years. He had spent most of it driven by the tangible measures of his profession: wins and losses, yards and touchdowns. Behind the details, he realized, there were hearts and minds and human beings he never had really seen. In his next job, he vowed not to make the same mistake.

“You start thinking about your mortality, that time is running out and you’ve got to figure this thing out,’’ Trestman said. “What am I going to leave if I’m just focused on me? You start thinking more and more about giving everything of yourself that you can and asking nothing in return.

“That was really a transformation for me, realizing that you’ve got to get first downs, and you’ve got to score, but the fulfillment comes in the relationships built around doing that. The relationships are the purpose. You can help [players] master their craft, and you can help them be better people and fathers and husbands when they’re done.’’

Success Up North

That attitude quickly endeared him to the Bears. Trestman has fostered mutual respect with his players, soliciting their input and giving Cutler the latitude and tools to take command of the offense. Last Sunday, Cutler confidently led the Bears to a come-from-behind victory that left teammates raving about Trestman’s play-calling and faith in his personnel.

“He’s been really receptive to my ideas,’’ Cutler said. “He’s really smart, not only about football, but about life. He wanted to help the guys as much as possible, not only on the field but off.’’

Trestman got a little off-field aid himself on his way back to the NFL. His daughters, Sarahanne and Chloe, had been tugged all over the country by his career; when he took the job at North Carolina State, he promised them they could finish high school in Raleigh, N.C.

Jim Popp, general manager of the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes, had admired him since Trestman coached alongside Popp’s father in Cleveland. To land him as head coach, the Alouettes offered to allow Trestman to live in Raleigh during the offseason and bring his family to Montreal for frequent visits. After leading the team to the CFL’s title game in his first season, Trestman guided it to two championships and built quarterback Anthony Calvillo into a two-time league MVP.

“Marc was never afraid to say ‘I don’t know everything,’ even in public,’’ Popp said. “He wasn’t afraid to take advice and give it a try. And he was always watching, listening and learning, educating himself so he could grow and get better.’’

Though Cutler has a history of fraught relationships with coaches, former Vikings executive Jeff Diamond predicted Trestman will be able to tap his full potential, given Trestman’s interpersonal skills and his association with many of the game’s greatest minds.

“He is going to be a successful head coach in the NFL,’’ said Diamond, a friend of Trestman’s since childhood. “He’s a creative, innovative guy and a great leader who has benefited from all of his life experiences. He should have had this opportunity a long time ago.’’

Trestman’s parents, Jerry and Sharon, and sister Cari all live in the Twin Cities and are adjusting to the idea of rooting for a division rival of their beloved Vikings. Trestman, known for his ability to counter whatever opponents throw at him, is adapting, too.

He acknowledged that Chicago is a big stage for a debut, draped in history and tradition. Still, Trestman said he is not nervous, despite waiting so many years for this moment to arrive. He hadn’t planned on taking the long way, but it turned out to be the best route.

“I think the thing I appreciate most now is that I got this job when I was never thinking about getting it,’’ he said. “I felt as long as I was focused on being the best head coach I could be in Montreal, that somewhere along the line, I would be given genuine consideration. I’m so grateful. And I’m confident that the passion I have for this game is worthy of the opportunity.’’







 

  • related content

  • Souhan: Musgrave and Ponder need to show us something

    Sunday September 15, 2013

    In a league where young quarterbacks are thriving, there should be no training wheels.

  • Chart: Marc Trestman at a glance

    Saturday September 14, 2013

    ABOUT TRESTMANAge: 57Hometown: St. Louis ParkFamily: wife, Cindy; daughters Sarahanne and ChloeEducation: Bachelor’s degree in political science from the University...

  • Chart: Trestman's coaching travels

    Saturday September 14, 2013

    Marc TRESTMAN’S COACHING TRAVELS1981-82: Volunteer assistant coach, University of Miami1983-84: Quarterbacks coach, University of Miami1985-86: Running backs coach, Vikings1987: Quarterbacks...

  • The Call: Vikings at Chicago

    Saturday September 14, 2013

    The Vikings are 1-11 in their past 12 games in Chicago, and recent meetings haven’t been particularly close.

  • Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman walks around the field before a preseason NFL football game against the San Diego Chargers, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013, in Chicago.

  • it’s not the lombardi trophy but ... Marc Trestman won two Grey Cups as head coach of the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 7 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 1
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Houston 85 FINAL
Miami 90
Indiana 89 FINAL
Minnesota 107
Utah 105 FINAL
Oklahoma City 91
Portland 93 FINAL
Denver 75
Phoenix 114 FINAL
LA Lakers 108
LA Clippers 107 FINAL
Golden State 125
San Jose 3 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Rangers 4 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 3
Toronto 5 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Detroit 1 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 2
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Nashville 4
Carolina 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 4
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Dallas 6
Florida 4 FINAL(OT)
Colorado 3
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(OT)
Calgary 1
Arkansas State 40 FINAL
Louisiana 55
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Montreal 10/24/14 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 10/24/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Grade the Vikings offense

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close