The Minnesota Vikings officially introduced Mike Zimmer as their new head coach Friday. At his initial press conference at Winter Park, Zimmer professed his honesty as his major strength which along with his patience has resulted in his opportunity to finally realize his dream of being a head coach in the NFL.
"My family and I are thrilled and excited to come to Minnesota. A place with so much passion and proud tradition," Zimmer said. "I walked down the hallways in the building here and I see all the jerseys up on the wall of all the great players that have played here, Hall of Fame players. I can walk down to the end of the hallway and talk to Hall of Fame coaches like Bud Grant."
It has been years in the making for Zimmer who has coordinated defenses in Dallas, Miami and Cincinnati. He has been interviewed for other head coaching positions, but has not been chosen something he always remembers and will always carry with him.
"I've told a lot of people, I've got a chip on my shoulder," Zimmer said. "I want to make sure that 31 other teams know that I'm here and I'm ready to coach this football team."
Zimmer had a little fun with his portrayal on the HBO reality series Hard Knocks. In the documentary, he is shown as an all business guy with little to no sense of humor who is not afraid to yell, cuss and swear.
"Who said I'm blunt," Zimmer asked. "I might be direct and sometimes nonsense. I think honesty is always the best policy. Players want to be coached, they want to be told what's right and what's wrong. I'm doing a disservice to my players if I'm not being honest with them."
According to Zimmer his coaching staff is still a work in progress and he did not tip his hand as to if members of the current staff would still be around for the upcoming season or would not give a timetable as to when his staff would be finalized.
Zimmer was joined by his family, son Adam and daughters Corri and Marki during the introduction. His son Adam coached with him in Cincinnati. In 2009, Zimmer's wife Vikki passed away suddenly.
"She would be real proud today," Zimmer said.
Zimmer becomes the ninth head coach in franchise history.