The Chances of Mike Zimmer Being Fired Are Very Low
The title says it all, folks: the chances of Mike Zimmer being fired by the Vikings are very low. It may be an unpopular opinion among many fans, but I actually think that’s the right decision.
For starters, it’s important to remember that we have a roster that is built in Mike Zimmer’s image. During the offseason, we brought in a myriad of players to restore a once-proud defense. They were chosen because they could help actualize Zim’s vision. The news of Patrick Peterson’s injury certainly takes the wind out our sails, and yet the reality remains that the defense has played reasonably well, especially lately. Dustin’s recent post on Vikings Territory highlights a number of strengths for the Vikings defense. We’re first in the NFL in sacks and 3rd down conversion.
Now, that doesn’t mean things have been flawless. The aforementioned post suggests we’re 29th in the NFL in yards per rush. A defense that gives up big yardage on the ground is one that will likely struggle.
Furthermore, we can likely be at least a little concerned about how we got to 3-3. Week 5 and 6 both ended in wins, but we allowed inferior teams to claw back into the game late. Rather than put away a lousy opponent, we allowed them to take us to the brink. It’s a concerning trend, one that has lead to many fans and writers to ask questions about our leadership; some have been lobbying for Mike Zimmer to be fired.
As I already mentioned, though, that’s an unlikely possibility, mostly due to the way the roster is built. I’ve long maintained that the Vikings have a Leadership Trinity, one that consists of their well-compensated QB, crusty HC, and slick GM. It’s possible one or two will outlast the other(s), but I think they’re a trio. I happen to believe that all will get the chance to show what they can do in 2021.
During his time in purple, Zimmer has done reasonably well. There have been disappointments, such as last season’s defensive disaster. It wasn’t a good look when Zim proudly proclaimed that he never had a bad defense before the season, a comment that looked pretty foolish by the end of the season.
To his credit, Zim was able to bring in lots of talent during the offseason. Patrick Peterson said Zim was the main reason why he wanted to come to Minnesota. After a headline-grabbing story made it common knowledge that players didn’t want to play for Zim, Stephen Weatherly, Mackensie Alexander, and Everson Griffen all returned to the Vikes. Playing for Zimmer can’t be that bad.
Of course, none of this will matter unless we find meaningful success in 2021. The ultimate measure of success is a Super Bowl trophy, though that feels pretty far off given our modest 3-3 record. At the very least, we’ll need to make some noise in the playoffs. For that to happen, things will need to change quick. We’ve recently discussed some areas where Minnesota can improve right here on Purple PTSD, so I won’t go over those things again.
Instead, I’ll merely suggest that our Vikings need to do a better job of leaning into their strengths. We’ve got an elite pair of WRs and a QB who is playing probably the best football of his career. Let’s use them accordingly. We have a pair of elite LBs and some great defensive linemen. What can we do to ensure they start completely nullifying the opposition’s run game? Certainly there are many other areas for our team to improve. The onus fall on our HC to identify these areas before motivating and equipping his players to respond accordingly.
If successful, Zimmer will be the Vikings’ head coach for a long time.