MINEPOLIS – Kevin O’Connell, who acts as his own de facto offensive coordinator, means that the Vikings, for the first time in nine seasons, will not have their head coach constantly willing to fire the offensive coordinator.
The Vikings introduced O’Connell as head coach on Thursday afternoon, four days after he served as the offensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams when they won the Super Cup.
O’Connell did not name the play for Rams. He will be the head coach and will play for the Vikings.
Perhaps it would have been wiser to concede to the assistant and learn to manage the team as a whole during the games, but Matt Laffler has won 39 regular season games in the last three years during the games, so doing so is not proven harm.
What is known is that O’Connell inherited a talented attack, problem defense and a franchise in which many talented people worked for many years without winning everything.
O’Connell was asked about current quarterback Kirk Cousins, who has one year left on his contract, and in one answer he sounded disapproving, and in another – loyal to Cassins.
In fact, the Vikings have only two logical and convenient choices for the Goats: allow him to fulfill the contract or extend the deal in a way that will give the 2022 team a better chance of winning.
Cousins are both problematic and much better than anyone else on the Viking list or radar.
What makes O’Connell’s arrival exciting.
Sean McVay, O’Connell’s coach, has just won the Super Cup with a defender who has never won the playoffs this season.
McVeigh reached another Super Cup with the defender, who this year went 3-10-1.
One of McVay’s coaching tree members, Zach Taylor, faced him in the Super Bowl, which helped Joe Barrow win a division title and three playoff games in his second season in the NFL.
Another member of McVay’s coaching tree, Brendan Staley, helped Justin Herbert become the most promising NFL defender whose team did not make the playoffs.
The coach / defender relationship is at the heart of most NFL champions and all NFL dynasties.
What’s even more intriguing about O’Connell’s relationship with McVeigh and his coaching tree is that all of these coaches also know how to lead the ball and lead a balanced attack.
So it could be that after many years, when Mike Zimmer roared at various short-term offensive coordinators to “run the ball”, the “Vikings” may have hired a coach who will get from the current game as much or more than Zimmer if -anything.
This year, the Rams effectively led the ball with three different leading defenders. This season, the Bengals have taken full advantage of Joe Mixon, who is similar to Dalwin Cook of the Vikings in skill set, if not speed. Chargers persuaded a great season with Austin Eckeler.
There are two types of defenders: those who exalt and those who need to be promoted. McVay’s crime can work anyway.
McVeigh won one Super Cup when his star was his back-back Todd Hurley, and his star was his best receiver Cooper Kupp. Rams prospered even if the defense was committed to stopping Gurley or Kupp, and Kupp made winning games during the Super Cup, even if Cincinnati knew he would be Rams ’main target.
The challenge for O’Connell would be pretty good resentment and make it great. To do this, he will need to either make Casino better, or make his job easier.
It’s risky to read too many quotes from the introductory press conference, but O’Connell was more excited about what awaits linebacker free agent Anthony Barr than Cousins.
By choosing to be his own offensive coordinator and highlight the game, O’Connell challenged himself to get the most out of his quarterback position. He can’t, like Zimmer, blame the CEO who signed it, or the coach who calls the plays.
If the apple falls close to the coaching tree, O’Connell won’t need a superstar quarterback.
Which is convenient.
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Jim Suhan: What are Viking coach Kevin O’Connell’s plans regarding the attack and QB’s Kirk Casino?
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