Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by PurpleMustReign » Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:16 pm

Mothman wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:04 am
fiestavike wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 7:44 am
To fire them after another year without a championship would be the conventional move at this point. Not following conventional wisdom seems to be one of the few things that actually improves a team's chances to win it all.
I understand why you question the wisdom of the "5 year window". I certainly don't think teams should be rigid about that but I do think 4-5 years is a good window in which to learn about a coach's strengths and weaknesses and assess his performance. The conventional wisdom in the league is probably just a consequence of an appropriate evaluation period.

I also understand the appeal of emulating Pittsburgh by showing patience but one of the reasons the Steelers have a history of longevity and stability with their coaches is their last 3 coaches all reached or won the Super Bowl within their first 6 years, clearly earning the patience they received. Noll won it all in 6 years, Cowher reached the big game in 4 and Tomlin won it in 2. They also posted winning seasons in long streaks. They were able to sustain success in a way we haven't seen the Vikings do in a long time. Inevitably, they slipped back toward .500 at times but overall, they made it pretty easy to be patient.

Just to reinforce the point: once Noll put together a winner, his teams posted 9 straight winning seasons. Cowher had 6 straight winning seasons right out of the gate, most of them in double digits. Tomlin hasn't had a losing season in 12 years. I think the patience followed the success rather than the success just being a consequence of the patience. It speaks to the strength of having the right people in place.

The Vikings have only had back-to-back winning seasons once in Spielman's 12 years with the team and that was under Brad Childress. I believe that strongly suggests the Vikings have the wrong GM in place if they want to win a Super Bowl.
Noll and Tomlin really benefitted by likely hall of fame qbs. Cowher had some really good ones as well. That helps. It isn't the only answer (I have to clarify that to avoid persecution) but a qood QB can sure make a coach look good.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by VikeFanInEagleLand » Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:39 pm

PurpleMustReign wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:16 pm


Noll and Tomlin really benefitted by likely hall of fame qbs. Cowher had some really good ones as well. That helps. It isn't the only answer (I have to clarify that to avoid persecution) but a qood QB can sure make a coach look good.
You really think Cowher had good QB's?
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by Mothman » Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:00 pm

PurpleMustReign wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:16 pm
Noll and Tomlin really benefitted by likely hall of fame qbs. Cowher had some really good ones as well. That helps. It isn't the only answer (I have to clarify that to avoid persecution) but a qood QB can sure make a coach look good.
Of course it helps but as you know, it's not exactly a newsflash that winning coaches benefit from great players, particularly QBs. However, it's important to remember that teams rarely end up with great QBs by accident. Does Rick Spielman strike anyone as a likely candidate to find a HoF-caliber QB?

My point is that it makes sense to be patient with coaches who perform like Noll, Cowher and Tomlin did. Getting the right coaches and management in place enables that continuity which, in turn, has genuine benefits. The Steelers are a great example of that. However, continuity itself has limited benefits without the right people and approach. The Vikings can look at their own history and see that a 10 year commitment to the same head coach doesn't necessarily yield postseason success or a Super Bowl appearance.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by cstelter » Fri Jan 18, 2019 7:55 pm

Mothman wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:04 am
Tomlin hasn't had a losing season in 12 years.

...

The Vikings have only had back-to-back winning seasons once in Spielman's 12 years with the team and that was under Brad Childress. I believe that strongly suggests the Vikings have the wrong GM in place if they want to win a Super Bowl.
I understand your point about causality of long careers with one team possibly being contingent on the first 5 years, but I'm not sure that paints the entire picture. I also think you're selling Zim/Spielberg a bit short and ignoring some apples to oranges between Zim, Noll, Tomlin, and Cowher.

2014 7-9 (losing season, but +2 over 2013)
2015 11-5 (winning season)
2016 8-8 (not a losing season)
2017 13-3 (winning season)
2018 8-7-1 (winning season)

So Spielman's had *two* back-to-back winning seasons (I'm defining a winning season as +.500 and 8-7-1 is .531 which is how I think anyone would).

Zim currently hasn't had a losing season in the past 4. Tomlin improved his team by 2 wins in his first season as did Zim. Tomlin raised his offense from #13 to #10 his first year and his defense from #11 to #2 (net gain of 12). Zim's offense dropped from #14 to #20 and defense rose from #32 to #11 (net gain of 15 spots)

There's very little evidence that Tomlin would have done substantially better taking over the team Zim did.

The difference you point out is that Tomlin went to 2 SB's and won one in his first 5 years, reaching the playoffs 4 of his first 5 years.

Another real difference is Tomlin started with Roethlisberger who already had a SB win to his name and only missed 7 games in Tomlin's first 5 seasons.

Bud grant said a good football coach needs a patient wife, a loyal dog, and a great quarterback -- but not necessarily in that order...

I think we can all agree Zim has never had a great quarterback, but Tomlin has. Noll had Bradshaw, Cowher's only SB win was with Roethlisberger.

Comparing Zim with Tomlin, I'm not sure how much either of them had to do with the QB's they had available to them.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by J. Kapp 11 » Fri Jan 18, 2019 9:45 pm

Here's a really great article on the Vikings' ESPN page today. It talks about Gary Kubiak's potential influence on the Vikings.

It starts with the offensive line.
ESPN.com wrote:But in that same timeframe during his later years in Houston, Kubiak was able to get the most out of an offensive line that wasn’t overloaded with star power -- similar to the situation he walks into with the Vikings and a unit that could look different by the time OTAs take place. Left tackle Duane Brown, a former first-round pick, went to two Pro Bowls under Kubiak in Houston. Center Chris Myers, a former sixth-round pick, went to the Pro Bowl in 2011 and 2012 along with Wade Smith, a journeyman left guard, who was selected for his first Pro Bowl in 2012.

"The detail of that zone-blocking scheme was incredible and the way he maximizes people's talent," former NFL quarterback Sage Rosenfels, who played under Kubiak, said on the Purple Daily show on SKOR North. "He just is so good at the details of the O-line, the details of that zone running game, the details of that play-action. I think he’s going to help with coaching the coaches and the details of all that needs to happen in order for an offense to be successful."
The part about "getting the most out of an offensive line that wasn't overloaded with star power" ought to interest every Vikings fan.

The article goes on to talk about his influence with quarterbacks.
ESPN.com wrote:This term [quarterback whisperer] gets thrown around a lot, but given the list of quarterbacks Gary Kubiak has worked with and his ability to get the most out of veterans such as Jake Plummer (three straight playoff appearances from 2003-05), Matt Schaub (set career highs in passing/attempts in 2009 while earning one of two trips to the Pro Bowl) and Joe Flacco (put up better numbers under Kubiak in 2014 than in his Super Bowl year), the title is often and fairly associated with the new Vikings coach.

"Kubiak is a guy who does a great job of maximizing a quarterback’s strengths and minimizing weaknesses," Rosenfels said. "The Vikings are not going to lead the NFL in passing yards and touchdowns next year but as far as being efficient with your quarterback and putting him in really good chance to have success -- which I believe is the No. 1 goal for your offense -- Kubiak has done that at a high level with guys who are less talented than Kirk Cousins."
This article, assuming all the platitudes given Kubiak are true, clears up a lot for me. He is reputed to be a really good coach in all the areas we're weak. Again, assuming this is true, the hire makes a ton of sense to me.

Read the full article here.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by Mothman » Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:31 pm

cstelter wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 7:55 pm
Mothman wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:04 am
Tomlin hasn't had a losing season in 12 years.

...

The Vikings have only had back-to-back winning seasons once in Spielman's 12 years with the team and that was under Brad Childress. I believe that strongly suggests the Vikings have the wrong GM in place if they want to win a Super Bowl.
I understand your point about causality of long careers with one team possibly being contingent on the first 5 years, but I'm not sure that paints the entire picture. I also think you're selling Zim/Spielberg a bit short and ignoring some apples to oranges between Zim, Noll, Tomlin, and Cowher.

2014 7-9 (losing season, but +2 over 2013)
2015 11-5 (winning season)
2016 8-8 (not a losing season)
2017 13-3 (winning season)
2018 8-7-1 (winning season)

So Spielman's had *two* back-to-back winning seasons (I'm defining a winning season as +.500 and 8-7-1 is .531 which is how I think anyone would).

Zim currently hasn't had a losing season in the past 4. Tomlin improved his team by 2 wins in his first season as did Zim. Tomlin raised his offense from #13 to #10 his first year and his defense from #11 to #2 (net gain of 12). Zim's offense dropped from #14 to #20 and defense rose from #32 to #11 (net gain of 15 spots)

There's very little evidence that Tomlin would have done substantially better taking over the team Zim did.

The difference you point out is that Tomlin went to 2 SB's and won one in his first 5 years, reaching the playoffs 4 of his first 5 years.

Another real difference is Tomlin started with Roethlisberger who already had a SB win to his name and only missed 7 games in Tomlin's first 5 seasons.

Bud grant said a good football coach needs a patient wife, a loyal dog, and a great quarterback -- but not necessarily in that order...

I think we can all agree Zim has never had a great quarterback, but Tomlin has. Noll had Bradshaw, Cowher's only SB win was with Roethlisberger.

Comparing Zim with Tomlin, I'm not sure how much either of them had to do with the QB's they had available to them.
Whether Zimmer had a lot or a little to do with the QBs he's had available to him is immaterial because it's not just about him. A head-to-head comparison between Zimmer and Tomlin (or Noll or Cowher) isn't the point. I only mentioned those coaches in the larger context of the Steelers patience, specifically the idea that continued patience with Spielman and Zimmer might emulate the Steelers approach in a way that will yield similar results.

As I wrote in response to Josh, great QBs obviously make a difference but great QBs don't just fall from the sky onto a team's roster. They're drafted (or signed) and developed. The Steelers overall success isn't simply a consequence of showing patience with their coaches. They drafted and developed Bradshaw and Roethlisberger. They've built Super Bowl-winning rosters. Based on their track records and/or areas of expertise, Spielman and Zimmer seem unlikely candidates to either find a great QB or build a Super Bowl winning team. There's certainly nothing in their history to suggest the former will happen.

Put simply (and it pains me to say it): the Steelers have constructed a championship organization. The Vikings haven't yet. The success Pittsburgh's had and the patience they've shown has been possible because of the people they've put in place over the years and the job they've done, it's not simply a consequence of patience itself. I obviously question whether the Vikings have the right people in key positions.

I know it's an unpopular opinion but I see no reason to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman is more likely to duplicate the success of the Steelers than it is to end up looking like what we've seen the last 5 years or to turn out like the 10 years the Vikes gave Green, the 8.5 years the Lions gave Fontes, the 16 years Cincy gave Lewis, etc.

I should add that you're obviously correct about the Vikings 2018 record. I misspoke when I wrote that they have only had back-to-back winning seasons once since Spielman arrived. Technically, they just did it again and I tend to forget that since 8-7-1 is so close to .500. That's my mistake. Anyway, eeking out the narrowest possible margin that can still be considered a winning season and missing the playoffs isn't indicative of the kind of success I feel should justify great patience. I guess a better way to make my point would be to say they've only had back-to-back playoff seasons once since hiring Spielman.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by cstelter » Sat Jan 19, 2019 4:57 pm

Mothman wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:31 pm
I know it's an unpopular opinion but I see no reason to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman is more likely to duplicate the success of the Steelers than it is to end up looking like what we've seen the last 5 years or to turn out like the 10 years the Vikes gave Green, the 8.5 years the Lions gave Fontes, the 16 years Cincy gave Lewis, etc.
I wasn't suggesting you were wrong to have your opinion, popular or unpopular. Only that it seemed your opinion was clouding your analysis of the facts (i.e. downplaying/ignoring reasons that may give other the idea that 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman *could* bring a SB to MIN again).

Honestly I see very few reasons to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman will yield a SB. And those reasons I do see aren't terribly strong, but they *are* reasons. You make strong points, but your conclusion seems overstated and while more likely than not to be proven correct should they get another 5 years does not yet constitute fact. Back in the 70's fans probably felt "I see no reason Bud Grant and this team can't win a superbowl", but they'd have been wrong and "negative critics" of the team would have been proven right. The negative critics of the world overwhelmingly are proven correct because each year nearly 97% of the teams fail to win the superbowl and only 3% of the teams have ever managed to get to their conference championship 12 out of 18 years.

My perspective is that I have no control over the direction the team takes and the team owes me nothing-- it's been my choice to follow them and hope for them. It's an emotional thing, not an intellectual thing. I tend to like cheering against the odds.

I'd rather see Zim/Speilman fail over the next 5 years leaving no room for doubt that their exit is the right decision. Flawed or not they have had their moments along the way like the Minneapolis miracle or the frozen playoff game against Seattle where Walsh met his Waterloo and that has been entertaining if not championship building. At the very least I would think another 5 years would provide the similar moments. I'd rather know they gave it their all and *still* failed rather than to see the Wilfs try yet again to try and push the reset button with no clear reason to think it will go any better then next 5 years than the prior 5 years or the previous 2 times they switched out their coach.

But I can certainly understand/respect your perspective as well.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by fiestavike » Sun Jan 20, 2019 8:09 am

cstelter wrote:
Sat Jan 19, 2019 4:57 pm
Mothman wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:31 pm
I know it's an unpopular opinion but I see no reason to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman is more likely to duplicate the success of the Steelers than it is to end up looking like what we've seen the last 5 years or to turn out like the 10 years the Vikes gave Green, the 8.5 years the Lions gave Fontes, the 16 years Cincy gave Lewis, etc.
I wasn't suggesting you were wrong to have your opinion, popular or unpopular. Only that it seemed your opinion was clouding your analysis of the facts (i.e. downplaying/ignoring reasons that may give other the idea that 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman *could* bring a SB to MIN again).

Honestly I see very few reasons to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman will yield a SB. And those reasons I do see aren't terribly strong, but they *are* reasons. You make strong points, but your conclusion seems overstated and while more likely than not to be proven correct should they get another 5 years does not yet constitute fact. Back in the 70's fans probably felt "I see no reason Bud Grant and this team can't win a superbowl", but they'd have been wrong and "negative critics" of the team would have been proven right. The negative critics of the world overwhelmingly are proven correct because each year nearly 97% of the teams fail to win the superbowl and only 3% of the teams have ever managed to get to their conference championship 12 out of 18 years.

My perspective is that I have no control over the direction the team takes and the team owes me nothing-- it's been my choice to follow them and hope for them. It's an emotional thing, not an intellectual thing. I tend to like cheering against the odds.

I'd rather see Zim/Speilman fail over the next 5 years leaving no room for doubt that their exit is the right decision. Flawed or not they have had their moments along the way like the Minneapolis miracle or the frozen playoff game against Seattle where Walsh met his Waterloo and that has been entertaining if not championship building. At the very least I would think another 5 years would provide the similar moments. I'd rather know they gave it their all and *still* failed rather than to see the Wilfs try yet again to try and push the reset button with no clear reason to think it will go any better then next 5 years than the prior 5 years or the previous 2 times they switched out their coach.

But I can certainly understand/respect your perspective as well.
Spielman and Zimmer have their warts, but I truly think they give us a better chance to win it all than we have by changing GM and coach at this point. They've had a couple years thrashing around since plan A fell apart, but I do believe (Zimmer, Kubiak, Cousins) is the kind of arrangement that might have long term stability and get the best out of each piece of that puzzle. This comes from a guy who frankly does not like Cousin's game.

I think all things considered, its been a good and promising 5 years for the Vikings. The QB and OL have been mishandled, and there is no denying that. That's on Rick Spielman. Zimmer is not always great at in game management, and is often painfully slow to replace struggling veterans. These are legitimate knocks. But as Jim said, over 5 years you get a real sense of strengths and weaknesses, and that's when you can start making considered moves to address those weaknesses. I think Tony Sparano was such an adjustment. I think Gary Kubiak is such an adjustment. I think it makes sense to give the current regime at least two more years, as the expiration of Kirk Cousin's contract marks a logical point at which is blow the thing up and start again if they haven't got it rolling by then.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by Mothman » Sun Jan 20, 2019 12:29 pm

cstelter wrote:
Sat Jan 19, 2019 4:57 pm
I wasn't suggesting you were wrong to have your opinion, popular or unpopular. Only that it seemed your opinion was clouding your analysis of the facts (i.e. downplaying/ignoring reasons that may give other the idea that 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman *could* bring a SB to MIN again).
I'm sorry if my comments came across that way. I've looked at this from many angles and I'm considering both the facts and the reasons others have for believing continued patience in Zimmer/Spielman could be rewarded. I'm just not articulating or restating them. My posts tend to be long enough already. :)
Honestly I see very few reasons to believe another 5 years of patience with Zimmer/Spielman will yield a SB. And those reasons I do see aren't terribly strong, but they *are* reasons. You make strong points, but your conclusion seems overstated and while more likely than not to be proven correct should they get another 5 years does not yet constitute fact. Back in the 70's fans probably felt "I see no reason Bud Grant and this team can't win a superbowl", but they'd have been wrong and "negative critics" of the team would have been proven right. The negative critics of the world overwhelmingly are proven correct because each year nearly 97% of the teams fail to win the superbowl and only 3% of the teams have ever managed to get to their conference championship 12 out of 18 years.
While true, I feel I should make it clear that I'm not expressing an expectation that the Vikings win the Super Bowl every year or even that Zimmer and Spielman be replaced because they haven't managed to win one yet. I haven't adopted my position because it's easier to be critical. I'm simply advocating what I consider a pragmatic view, based on conclusions I've drawn from the available evidence. I'm not a pessimist by nature.

I assume most fans believe the team's patience with Zimmer and Spielman shouldn't be infinite and that, at some point, it will be appropriate for the Vikings to make a final determination about whether the two men should remain in their current positions or be replaced. The main disagreement is about how much time to give them before making that final determination and under what circumstances to make the decision. Based on all the evidence at hand, I think I can make a strong case that the conclusion of the 2018 season was a good time to make the decision and the Vikings should be hiring a new GM and head coach. That's certainly not the only case to be made.
My perspective is that I have no control over the direction the team takes and the team owes me nothing-- it's been my choice to follow them and hope for them. It's an emotional thing, not an intellectual thing. I tend to like cheering against the odds.

I'd rather see Zim/Speilman fail over the next 5 years leaving no room for doubt that their exit is the right decision. Flawed or not they have had their moments along the way like the Minneapolis miracle or the frozen playoff game against Seattle where Walsh met his Waterloo and that has been entertaining if not championship building. At the very least I would think another 5 years would provide the similar moments. I'd rather know they gave it their all and *still* failed rather than to see the Wilfs try yet again to try and push the reset button with no clear reason to think it will go any better then next 5 years than the prior 5 years or the previous 2 times they switched out their coach.

But I can certainly understand/respect your perspective as well.
Thanks, I feel the same way about your view. I look at it this way: the kind of moments you refer to above are likely occur along the way under any any good hire so I'm not too worried about that, although I acknowledge the risks associated with major changes. I feel Zimmer and Spielman have been giving it their all anyway so I'm satisfied that we've had a good opportunity to see their best efforts.

Regarding your last sentence: I can't emphasize enough that I see Spielman as the bigger factor here and not by a slim margin. My view is replacing him with a better GM could change things significantly for the Vikings. I think a top-notch GM is a big part of what's been missing for decades and finding that GM would be the reason to believe changing coaches might go better than it has the last several times they did it.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by S197 » Sun Jan 20, 2019 2:19 pm

I think having them play out the last year of their contract and reassess is reasonable. Zimmer has a winning record and turned around an absolute mess of a team 5 years ago. Spielman has had his issues but it's hard to deny he's assembled a very good roster absent the OL and a few other arguable positions.

Before he came, I said Spielman and possibly Zimmer have tied their career to Cousins with the signing. I still believe this to be the case and another lackluster year will result in a management shakeup. I'd rather give benefit of the doubt than throw the baby out with the bath water.
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by PurpleMustReign » Sun Jan 20, 2019 4:00 pm

S197 wrote:
Sun Jan 20, 2019 2:19 pm
I think having them play out the last year of their contract and reassess is reasonable. Zimmer has a winning record and turned around an absolute mess of a team 5 years ago. Spielman has had his issues but it's hard to deny he's assembled a very good roster absent the OL and a few other arguable positions.

Before he came, I said Spielman and possibly Zimmer have tied their career to Cousins with the signing. I still believe this to be the case and another lackluster year will result in a management shakeup. I'd rather give benefit of the doubt than throw the baby out with the bath water.
I get it. I just wonder about their ability to sign free agents with what could essentially be a lame duck coach. The decision has been made, and there is nothing I can do but support it. But I agree with Jim, at some point there will have to be a very difficult decision to be made (or maybe not so easy if they win the Super Bowl next season).
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Re: Gary Kubiak Joins Vikings as Offensive Adviser/Assistant Head Coach

Post by PurpleKoolaid » Sun Jan 20, 2019 5:09 pm

S197 wrote:
Sun Jan 20, 2019 2:19 pm
I think having them play out the last year of their contract and reassess is reasonable. Zimmer has a winning record and turned around an absolute mess of a team 5 years ago. Spielman has had his issues but it's hard to deny he's assembled a very good roster absent the OL and a few other arguable positions.

Before he came, I said Spielman and possibly Zimmer have tied their career to Cousins with the signing. I still believe this to be the case and another lackluster year will result in a management shakeup. I'd rather give benefit of the doubt than throw the baby out with the bath water.
I'm afraid the bathwater has been cold for quite a while.
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