The Vikings announced what are expected to be the final moves for their 2021 coaching staff on Wednesday afternoon, promoting co-defensive coordinator Andre Patterson to assistant head coach and adding two more assistants.
Patterson's promotion, which follows his move from defensive line coach to co-defensive coordinator last year, is the latest upgrade for the 60-year-old, who worked with Dennis Green in Minnesota from 1998-99 and has been a close confidant of coach Mike Zimmer's during their seven seasons together with the Vikings.
They have known one another since their time at Weber State in the late 1980s. Patterson convinced Zimmer to put his own health first and take a leave of absence from the team after his eighth eye surgery in 2017. Zimmer put Patterson in charge of the team during the Vikings' offseason program while the coach was away.
The Vikings often credit Patterson for the development of players like Everson Griffen, Linval Joseph and Danielle Hunter, who all became Pro Bowlers under Patterson's coaching in Minnesota. The Vikings are ninth in the league in sacks and fifth in yards allowed since Patterson and Zimmer came to Minnesota together in 2014.
Robert Steeples, who appeared in two games on special teams with the 2013 Vikings, will become the team's new assistant special teams coach. New Vikings special teams coordinator Ryan Ficken held Steeples' role in 2013, and Steeples played with both Adam Thielen and Harrison Smith as part of Leslie Frazier's final team in Minnesota.
The Vikings also hired former 49ers assistant strength and conditioning coach Marquis Johnson to the same role in Minnesota. Johnson worked in San Francisco from 2017-18 before two years in college.