After the signature win of his two years with the Vikings, coach Mike Zimmer on Monday tried to downplay the significance of last night’s division-clinching 20-13 victory over the Packers at Lambeau Field.
“I hope this is just a step honestly,” he said. “I don’t want this to be the defining moment in my career for sure. I hope that there’s a lot more on the horizon. I hope that there’s a lot more things to accomplish.”
The Vikings on Sunday can accomplish their first playoff win since 2009 if they defeat the Seahawks, who beat them by 31 points last month, at TCF Bank Stadium. But c’mon, Coach? You didn’t stop for even a little while last night and savor the exhilarating victory over the rival Packers?
“No, there was a few hugs in the locker room but that’s about it,” Zimmer said. “Came back and went to work, just like a normal week.”
But before the Vikings left Lambeau Field late last night for the airport, the Star Tribune did snap a picture of Zimmer sitting shotgun on the team bus with a big grin and his feet kicked up on the dashboard.
“I was probably reading the 60-some texts that I had. I was just laughing at them. I didn’t know anybody was taking my picture, to be honest with you,” Zimmer said. “It was from a lot of people I don’t hear from very often.”
There is a good reason why Zimmer was not dwelling on the win today. In his two-plus decades in the NFL, Zimmer has learned that opportunities like the one the Vikings now have in front of them can be few and far between and they should not be taken for granted.
“You never know how many opportunities you’re going to get,” he said. “I’ve been in the NFL 22 years and won the Super Bowl my second year and I haven’t been back. It’s awful hard and when you get these opportunities you have to try to take advantage of them.”