The Klint Kubiak Approval Rating Is In
The Minnesota Vikings waited until the last minute of the hiring cycle to choose Klint Kubiak for the team’s offensive coordinator job this offseason. There is no apparent rhyme or reason for the delay – head coach Mike Zimmer just took longer than usual to reach a verdict.
Klint’s father, Gary, coached the offense last season and led the bunch to the NFL’s 11th-best ranking for points scored and 4th-highest mark in yards gained. Not bad for a coach that was often scrutinized for vanilla playcalling.
Zimmer vocally endorsed continuity with his offensive regime, and the closest man to fill the role is Gary Kubiak’s son. Klint was hired by the Vikings in 2013, six years before his father had anything to do with Minnesota. With Klint, Zimmer will theoretically experience a continuance of his 2020 offense — one that excelled with playmakers like Kirk Cousins, Dalvin Cook, Justin Jefferson, and Adam Thielen.
An unscientific poll was conducted to take the pulse of the hiring decision via Twitter. Over 700 folks opined, and so far, the hire of Klint is championed.
Do you approve of the hire for Klint Kubiak as Offensive Coordinator?— Dustin Baker (@DustBaker) February 9, 2021
The results are certainly derived from Vikings fans, so there is likely a natural tendency to endorse the move no matter what. Why? People support their team. But had this hire been universally panned, the “yes” answer would be substantially further south than 86%.
Ergo, for most Vikings enthusiasts, Klint’s addition is welcomed.
Coached the Best out of Cousins
Kirk Cousins has led two different franchises for a total of six full seasons – three in Washington and three in Minnesota. Hard to believe, isn’t it? It does not feel like long ago that the Washington Football Team was playing tag with Cousins’ contracting, slapping the unpopular franchise tag on him two years consecutively.
In terms of holding the job as the undisputed starter, though,Cousins has now been a Viking as long as, well, a WFTer. Cousins was quite good in Washington, but he has been significantly more efficient – and flat-out better – with the Vikings.
Interestingly, Cousins’ best career seasons have occurred with Klint Kubiak as his direct quarterbacks coach.
With zero Klint in his life (2012-2018), Cousins’ career passer rating is 95.0. Sprinkle son-Kubiak onto the griddle, and Cousins catapults to 106.1 – a 12% spike. Cousins has either coincidentally thrived with Klint or there is a causation effect. Common sense supports the latter.
On the merits of Cousins’ improvements alone, Klint earned an audition to boss man of the offense.
Kevin Stefanski was admired by the Vikings organization and fans during his long tenure with the team. Then he left – and won Coach of the Year in Cleveland. A comparable future is possible for Klint.
When the Vikings employed dad-Kubiak, some griped about his age. There was fear that Gary would implement an archaic offense. Whether he did or didn’t, his offense was a Top 10 bunch. Deal with it.
Now, however, age-related chagrin is unnecessary. Ideally, the Vikings will maintain the Kubiak Top 10 Offense standard for on-the-field production. Then, per Klint’s own words on this week, the team can evolve with the rest of the league.
This is why fans want a younger offensive mind. Those young minds say stuff like this – innovative, out-of-the-box things. If Klint can impregnate the Vikings offense with some motion, creativity, deep-ball risk-taking, and flair – all while pleasing Zimmer – balance is born.
Will He Actually Stay?
What if Klint’s offense is simply fantastic?
That would be bittersweet. Sure, the 2021 Vikings would win games and maybe even a Super Bowl, but Klint will be the first on the docket for other NFL teams seeking head coaches in this scenario.
This is the new normal.
Young offense-first brain excels – young offense-first brain becomes a head coach. It’s happening all over the place.
So – drink Klint in. Vikings faithful will cheer boisterously for him to succeed. But as soon as he does just that, he is as good as gone. Father Kubiak felt safe because he was “been there, done that” for head-coaching gigs. He even won a Super Bowl in 2015. Nevertheless, Gary decided to retire again, and that’s a wrap.
Klint has a clean bill of optimism. Over 85% of VikingsVille supports his hire. That is assuredly better than wholesale disapproval. He will win a lot of hearts if he takes his father’s playbook and youthfully spikes it with some purple drank.