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Continued: Souhan: Zygi Wilf can't afford to botch Vikings' coaching hire

  • Article by: JIM SOUHAN , Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 5, 2014 - 12:00 AM

His competitors already have done him a favor.

The Texans hired Bill O’Brien, whose claim to competence was working in the vicinity of Tom Brady and helping Penn State recover from scandal enough to compete in the mediocre Big Ten.

The Buccaneers hired Lovie Smith, perhaps the most boring competent coach in recent NFL history.

All of the candidates Wilf should want still are available. He can opt for the familiar (Darrell Bevell), the nostalgic (Jack Del Rio), the flavor of the month (Adam Gase) or the overdue assistant (Mike Zimmer).

He can look for the next Mike McCarthy or Mike Tomlin, an assistant whose leadership skills outweigh a thin résumé, or the next Pete Carroll or Bill Belichick, the retread head coach who learned from his previous firing.

There is a great coach out there waiting to be hired. Now, for the first time since he bumbled through his first news conference as Vikings owner, Wilf should be prepared to display prescience.

Over his years as an NFL owner, Wilf has learned to avoid podiums and emotionalism.

Sometime in the next month, he’ll make the hire that will define him as an NFL owner.

Zygi should be ready for his close-up. Zygi should be ready to prove he can do more than write out a check.

 

Jim Souhan can be heard weekdays at noon and Sundays from 10 to noon on 1500 ESPN. His Twitter name is @SouhanStrib. • jsouhan@startribune.com

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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 pm
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pm
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
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

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