Column: Getting what you want
Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 11, 2006
Jeff Budlong, Sports Editor
I don’t know if Brad Childress will be a success in his first head coach job in the NFL but I know that I have been impressed with the way Viking ownership has attacked the offseason so far.
In a flurry of head coach firings &045; that seemed to leave as many openings as Baskin-Robbins has flavors &045;&160;the Vikings made sure they were not left out in the cold spinning the coaching carousel.
While Childress doesn’t have head coaching experience &045;&160;or even play calling experience for that matter at the NFL level &045; Vikings owner Zygi Wilf was decisive in his move to get the man he believes can lead the team to his goal of a Super Bowl title.
It has to be refreshing for Viking fans watching an owner who is legitimately interested in having his team succeed rather than one who appeared to be more set on moving it south.
Regardless of whether or not Childress ends up being the right choice, I think it is more important that after a season of turmoil both on and off the field the Vikings have a clear direction heading into the offseason as they prepare for the 2006-2007 season.
Instead of recycling a coach that has not been successful in previous stops (i.e. Norv Turner) the Vikings are going with a man who helped lead Philadelphia to a string of NFC championship games and last year’s Super Bowl.
He is also no stranger to distractions on and off the field after dealing with the T.O. saga this past season.
Another added bonus for Vikings fans is that Wilf’s quick work kept the Green Bay Packers from even getting a chance to interview Childress.
It must be rough being &8220;held hostage&8221; in a five-star hotel while millions of dollars are being thrown around you.
When the news first broke that Wilf had waited roughly 30 minutes after Minnesota’s season-ending victory over Chicago to fire Tice it seemed a little cruel even in a business that has little loyalty left in it.
However, Wilf just wanted to get a jump on a search that he knew would be filled with plenty of competition in a matter of hours.
I guess when you dole out millions of dollars to buy an NFL franchise you can run it any way you want without fear of what others might think.
Now, the big question to be answered will be whether or not the West Coast offense will flourish in the Midwest.
It looks like it will be led by a quarterback with a rebuilt knee in Daunte Culpepper and with a running back situation that is still anything but crystal clear.
The good news is that the Vikes still play in the NFC North where Chicago was the runaway winner this year, but still will not to be confused for an offensive juggernaut.
The Green Bay Packers, with or without Farve, will have a new coach and a much bigger rebuilding project than Minnesota.
And Detroit, well, they still have Matt Mullen &8216;nuff said.
This NFL season has yet to wrap up but the Vikings have their offseason moving full steam ahead in the right direction.