For the past eight seasons, Mike Zimmer was at the helm of a swingy Minnesota Vikings franchise that went 2-3 in just three playoff appearances. That’s no longer the case, as the Vikings decided to part ways with Zimmer earlier this week and are now in search of their next head coach. Who are the names to consider as the next possible jarl of Skol Nation?
NitroBetting is ready to equip its bettors with knowledge on the latest developments approaching the 2022 NFL offseason. This time, let’s take a look at the top three head-coaching candidates who could be in charge of the Minnesota Vikings entering this offseason, as well as how they might fit in the team’s current system.
3 Best 2022 NFL Season Minnesota Vikings Coaching Candidates After Firing Mike Zimmer
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Jim Harbaugh – Michigan Wolverines head coach
As one of the top college football head coaches expected to make the jump (or, in this case, return) to the pros, Jim Harbaugh will forever be in the discussion of rumor mills surrounding the 2022 NFL offseason’s coaching carousel.
Harbaugh is no stranger to success at the NFL level, having been named Coach of the Year in 2011 and taking the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2013. The Michigan alum would be much closer to his home in Ann Arbor and hometown of Toledo if he resided in Minneapolis during the NFL season. He’ll also have a chance to take over a Vikings squad that’s just a few defensive pieces away from becoming relevant playoff contenders once more.
Kevin O’Connell – Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator
A stacked Minnesota offensive arsenal was relatively put to waste under defensive-minded Zimmer’s regime. In turn, Minny wouldn’t be at fault for shifting gears by hiring an offensive guru such as Rams OC Kevin O’Connell.
Several head coaches from the Sean McVay coaching tree are finding relative success on their own right now, namely the Bengals’ Zac Taylor and Chargers’ Brandon Staley. O’Connell could be the next man up in this long line of McVay’s system, with the possibility of Kirk Cousins having a turnaround campaign in 2022 similar to that of Matthew Stafford this 2021 season being his biggest selling point.
Matt Eberflus – Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator
One can’t fault the Vikings for sticking with a more defensive-minded head coach at the helm, as it’s their defense that’s been the team’s calling card for the past few years. That being said, Indianapolis’s Matt Eberflus comes to mind as the next hotshot coaching hire.
Eberflus is the reason why the Colts have a top-10 defense since the 2018 campaign. Although Indy’s D took a step back this season, the team can attribute its decline to the myriad health-related concerns amidst the pandemic. Darius Leonard became an All-Pro player and was named the Defensive Rookie of the Year of his draft class in Eberflus’ first season as the Colts’ DC. This should be enough reason for the Vikes to consider Eberflus as their next head coach, even if just for his keen eye of drafting and developing defensive prospects.
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