Hiring in any business is a mix of instinct and measuring qualifications. Solely going by which candidate checks the most boxes is efficient but can be short-sighted.
With that said, the latest name to emerge in the Vikings search for a new head coach is intriguing for a number of reasons. I don't know Raheem Morris personally, nor do I have a sense beyond what I've read of his personality and style.
But checking boxes gets you into the conversation. And he fills up a lot of them, as I talked about on Wednesday's Daily Delivery podcast.
Here are a few reasons he's so intriguing:
*Much of the discussion about this next Vikings hire has been focused on hiring an offensive-minded coach — a clear departure from the Mike Zimmer era. But a case can be made for defense as well.
Morris? He has experience with both. He came up as a defensive coach, but for five years from 2015-19 he was an offensive assistant with the Falcons. For the last two years he shifted back to defense, coordinating a Rams D that finished in the top five in Football Outsiders' DVOA this year. And he has already been a head coach, being responsible for all parts of the game.
*Morris is a good mix of youth and experience. He's only 45. He was probably too young when he had his first chance as a head coach with Tampa Bay at age 32, where he had the reputation of being perhaps too much of a players' coach and likely learned from those mistakes.
So he might be in that sweet spot of upbeat but seasoned, experienced but not outdated.
*As a Black head coach candidate, Morris has earned another chance that many of his peers have not been afforded. The Vikings have been out front in their commitment to equity and diversity, and they should treat Morris as a serious candidate because of his qualifications.
I'm not saying Morris should vault to the top of the list. An interview tells as much of the story as a resume, and we will see how that goes assuming it happens.
I am saying the more I learn about Morris, the more I like the possibility of him being the next head coach here.