Report: Vikings land new RB coach

January, 25, 2014
Jan 25
8:15
PM ET
MINNEAPOLIS -- We say this with a disclaimer, since the Minnesota Vikings haven't released any names on their coaching staff and new coach Mike Zimmer has declined to comment on any hires until the whole group is in place. But based on what we've been able to cobble together from various reports and sources, the team's coaching staff could be almost complete.

The Vikings have hired Pittsburgh Steelers running backs coach Kirby Wilson to do the same job for them, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Wilson would replace James Saxon, the Vikings' running backs coach for the last three seasons.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune has reported Scott Turner, the son of new Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner, was seen conducting the Vikings' quarterback meetings at the Senior Bowl. Former Vikings defensive backs coach Joe Woods said earlier this week that offensive line coach Jeff Davidson and wide receivers coach George Stewart would be given opportunities to interview for jobs on Zimmer's staff. It's unknown whom the Vikings would hire as a tight ends coach after letting Jimmie Johnson go, but other than that, their main position coaches under Turner would appear to be set.

On defense, the Vikings have reportedly hired former Tennessee Titans defensive coordinator Jerry Gray to coach their defensive backs under coordinator George Edwards, and Zimmer's son Adam could also land a role on his father's staff. Woods also said linebackers coach Fred Pagac and would get a chance to interview for a job with Zimmer.

It remains to be seen whether the Vikings would keep defensive line coach Brendan Daly, and it's entirely possible that some of the holdovers from Leslie Frazier's staff wouldn't get jobs after interviewing with Zimmer. The Vikings could also add a second coach at a number of positions, as they had under Frazier. But the Vikings appear to be closing in on completing their offensive staff, with their defensive group not far behind.

The big question, of course, is what will happen with special teams coordinator Mike Priefer in light of an investigation into former punter Chris Kluwe's allegations that Priefer made homophobic remarks during the 2012 season. Kluwe's attorney, Clayton Halunen, said on Saturday that it would be "very irresponsible" for the Vikings to announce Priefer was staying on the team's staff until after the investigation is complete. But Woods said earlier this week he believed Priefer would stay on staff with the Vikings.

Ben Goessling

ESPN Minnesota Vikings reporter

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