Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Bevell, Del Rio wouldn't swap Super Bowl for Vikings' top job

Posted by: Mark Craig under Super Bowl, Vikings coaches Updated: January 29, 2014 - 10:20 AM

NEW YORK -- Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman cast a wide net when he went in search of a head coach the day after Leslie Frazier was fired. At least three of the four coordinators in Super Bowl XLVIII were entangled in that net to some degree before the Vikings picked former Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer.

We caught up with two of those coordinators -- Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and Broncos defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio -- on Tuesday. Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, like Bevell, interviewed with Spielman. Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase made it clear early on to all teams with coaching vacancies that he wouldn't be interviewing for or even discussing new jobs until after the Broncos' season was over.

Bevell and Del Rio have ties to the Vikings. Bevell was the team's offensive coordinator from 2006 to 2010. Del Rio was a linebacker for the Vikings from 1992 to 1995.

Yes, both of them would have loved to get the Vikings' head coaching job. But neither one of them would exchange this week for that opportunity, so they're not too concerned about whether their teams' extended postseason success hurt their chances of getting a head coaching job. And, yes, assistants on Super Bowl teams are at a distinct disadvantage because not even the dysfunctional Browns were willing to wait to hire a head coach until after the Super Bowl.

"I wouldn't change this opportunity for anything," Bevell said. "This is a great opportunity for us. There is nothing to look back to. Just moving forward.

"Obviously, I know the place in Minnesota. I know the people who are there. I was excited about talking to them. But, beyond that, I don't know what else to say."

It was Bevell's fourth interview with a team. He's never been a head coach.

"You try to understand all the different interviews that you've done," he said. "The four interviews that I've done, they were all four different types of interviews. So you're able to learn and get better. I like to get some feedback as well. I haven't been able to do that this year because of what we've been doing.

"In Chicago [last year], they told me the biggest thing came down to having head coaching experience. That's something that I don't have. Sometimes, the timing isn't right. There wasn't anything I could do about not having been a head coach."

Del Rio didn't interview with the Vikings, but was on their radar. He has head coaching experience -- he went 69-73, including 1-2 in the postseason, as Jaguars coach for nine seasons -- and has now been an assistant on two Super Bowl teams, including the Ravens team that won a championship during the 2000 season. Del Rio also stepped in temporarily for Broncos head coach John Fox when he had his heart surgery this season.

"I don't worry too much about [not getting the Vikings job]," Del Rio said. "Would it have been a good opportunity? I don't want to sit here and get into hypotheticals. Obviously, I had a great time playing up there. It's a great organization. But, for me, I'm enjoying what I'm doing now. We're at the Super Bowl, which is what we're all after.

"Here it is at the end of the season and we're one of the last two teams with a chance to win a championship. I'm fired up for that. Down the road and in the future, who knows where it goes and what opportunities are out there. Would I love the opportunity again? Yes. Do I think it will come? Yes, I do. But right now, I am very excited to be here leading this defense, looking forward to all that I can do and we can do collectively to win a championship."

Del Rio was asked how serious the interest was from the Vikings, but that was a pitch he wasn't going to take a cut at.

"I'm not going to sit here and get into who reached out and didn't reach out and all those types of things," he said. "I would just say I'm here and fired up to be here."

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Pittsburgh 5
Washington 3 FINAL
Columbus 4
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL
Carolina 4
Dallas 2 FINAL
Montreal 3
Detroit 5 FINAL
Florida 4
Colorado 3 FINAL(OT)
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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 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 NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

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