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Vikings have the right to block Kirby Wilson hire in Cleveland

1518506 AP

For years, the NFL has employed a simple rule when it comes to assistant coaches under contract. Unless they are being offered a head-coaching job, the team currently holding the rights to the assistant coach can keep him from leaving for another team.

For some reason, the decision of the Vikings to prevent running backs coach Kirby Wilson from leaving to become the run-game coordinator in Cleveland has sparked consternation in some circles, with John Wooten of the Fritz Pollard Alliance openly lobbying for Wilson to be released.

“When a guy gets a chance to advance, the team should not deny him that because there’s only so many opportunities,” Wooten said, via Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “My position is that the team should let the guy go. It was not a lateral move. We were talking about an elevation to running game coordinator.”

Wooten should take it up with the league, which maintains the rule that allows a team to require an assistant coach to honor his contract unless the promotion entails becoming a head coach. And if any assistant coach wants the freedom to leave for an upgrade, the assistant coach should sacrifice the security that comes with a multi-year contract and accept employment on a year-to-year basis.

It’s no different than a team that needs a starting quarterback wanting to give the backup with another team the job. The team that has the backup under contract has the no-brainer right to expect him to honor the contract. The fact that any team would be pressured to relent on such a fundamental concept is unfair to every team.

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65 Responses to “Vikings have the right to block Kirby Wilson hire in Cleveland”
  1. gbbvan says: Jan 17, 2016 3:06 PM

    Who wouldn’t want to get the hell out of there?

  2. h0c2000 says: Jan 17, 2016 3:11 PM

    Stupid comparison between players and coaches. Coaches contracts are guaranteed. We all know players contracts aren’t.

  3. wtfru2 says: Jan 17, 2016 3:15 PM

    It’s really just semantics. All the Vikings need to do is change his title to running back coordinator instead of running back coach and call it good. Then he can live up to his current contract and have a nice title.

  4. firerogergoodell says: Jan 17, 2016 3:15 PM

    If Hue Jackson wants him so badly why not offer him the offensive coordinator job? It would just be a title promotion anyways since Hue will call the plays on offense.

    The Vikings wouldn’t have blocked if they offered him the OC job instead of a lateral move to RB coach / run game coordinator.

  5. vbe2 says: Jan 17, 2016 3:17 PM

    The NFL has two coaching positions. Head Coach and Assistant Coach. If an assistant isn’t becoming a Head Coach, it’s a lateral move.

  6. mediasloppy says: Jan 17, 2016 3:19 PM

    “running backs coach” vs “the run-game coordinator ”

    Looks like a matter of words rather than jobs…

  7. In Teddy We Trust says: Jan 17, 2016 3:21 PM

    Okay, “run game coordinator” is not a thing.

  8. Ferdinand says: Jan 17, 2016 3:23 PM

    Or maybe it is as simple as the Vikings think he is a big part of their improvement in the past couple of years and they want to keep improving with a guy who has shown he knows what he’s doing.

  9. Ferdinand says: Jan 17, 2016 3:25 PM

    Isn’t Cleveland where coaches go to die? So, really, Minnesota is doing the guy a huge favor.

  10. sminco123 says: Jan 17, 2016 3:27 PM

    Trade him. If the Browns really want him, then a mid round draft pick should do the trick.

  11. brawlkc says: Jan 17, 2016 3:28 PM

    While we all acknowledge that the movement from a Running Backs Coach to a Running Game Coordinator is an upgrade, commenter vbe2 is dead-on accurate. The NFL doesn’t see the difference from lower management to middle management.

    While this is unfortunate for coach Wilson, he did sign the contract and is currently not being offered a HC position. I’m sure that the Vikes would listen to some form of compensation from the Browns if they’re so inclined to feel that they want this gentleman badly enough.

  12. inallsincerity says: Jan 17, 2016 3:43 PM

    The NFL replaced Lovie Smith with Hue Jackson, but they adhered to the Rooney Rule. No progress made here, five of 32 coaches are Black, six minorities altogether. What a joke.

  13. ducksk says: Jan 17, 2016 4:01 PM

    Vikes franchise is a joke, always has been, most likely always will be. Fact.

  14. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 4:04 PM

    gbbvan says:
    Jan 17, 2016 3:06 PM
    Who wouldn’t want to get the hell out of there?
    ———————————————

    Ah…….is this one of those mature, calm and high integrity packer fan posts?

    According to packer fans, I thought all of their posts show how they don’t stoop to some low level troll?

  15. terryleather says: Jan 17, 2016 4:04 PM

    Yes, because the NFL has a long, proud history in honoring contracts.

  16. corky2141 says: Jan 17, 2016 4:05 PM

    Maybe Kirby didn’t really want the job, & asked the Vikes to “decline” his movement so he doesn’t look like the bad guy & doesn’t have to go searching for a new position in 1-2 years anyway.

  17. filthymcnasty3 says: Jan 17, 2016 4:13 PM

    These Viking coaches can’t just take their participant ribbons and bolt to a better team.

  18. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 4:14 PM

    yes

  19. ariani1985 says: Jan 17, 2016 4:15 PM

    Notice that no packer coaches were promoted this year?

  20. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 4:15 PM

    Okay, “run game coordinator” is not a thing.
    ———–
    Yes. run game coordinator is a thing. A simple google search would show you that. Todd Walsh from the Jaguars being one example

  21. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 4:17 PM

    ducksk says:
    Jan 17, 2016 4:01 PM
    Vikes franchise is a joke, always has been, most likely always will be. Fact.
    ————————–

    Yes indeed.

    Yet another classy packer fan post.

  22. 4sacroc says: Jan 17, 2016 4:23 PM

    Vikes moving into a new dome with plastic grass.

    Big boy football, right there.

  23. filthymcnasty3 says: Jan 17, 2016 4:23 PM

    Why so angry, Viking fans?

    You had a nice little season – by your standards.

    Why so bitter?

  24. gbbvan says: Jan 17, 2016 4:24 PM

    Class and queen fans don’t go together…

  25. The Almighty Cabbage says: Jan 17, 2016 4:29 PM

    screamingyellowzonkers says:
    Jan 17, 2016 4:17 PM
    ducksk says:
    Jan 17, 2016 4:01 PM
    Vikes franchise is a joke, always has been, most likely always will be. Fact.
    ————————–

    Yes indeed.

    Yet another classy packer fan post.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    What makes you think he (or she) is a Packer fan? Face it, you chuckleheads have alienated every other fan base in the entire NFL.

  26. thejuddstir says: Jan 17, 2016 4:31 PM

    Some how the race card will find it’s way into this too. The Fritz Pollard Alliance, if it had any respect, just lost it with their cute little game of semantics.

  27. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 4:33 PM

    So here is a story on a Vikings coach.

    And packer fans are first out of the gate with hate filled posts about the Vikings.

    I thought packer fans were above all that?

  28. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 4:35 PM

    The only bitter posts on this story are from packer fans.

  29. bobnelsonjr says: Jan 17, 2016 4:49 PM

    This is the guy that has to take the blame for training Adrian Peterson’s 3rd down replacement and next season take the heat for Peterson’s decline.

    The poor guy is being held prisoner in a no win situation.

  30. Frazier28/7 says: Jan 17, 2016 4:51 PM

    Why you crying little packer fans. It’s so cute watching the packers defense running around out there trying to play football.

    Way to get curb stomped in OT in the playoffs. Again.

  31. pftstory says: Jan 17, 2016 4:51 PM

    So if you hire the Defensive backs coach from another team for the same duties and include the term coordinator to the title its a promotion?

    So can you steal a Line coach by offering the title of Assistant Coordinator of Clean Towel Management?

    What does a Running backs coordinator do different from a running backs coach?

  32. h0metownzero says: Jan 17, 2016 4:55 PM

    This little fella seems especially angry.

  33. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 4:56 PM

    Almighty, I highly doubt some random fan from another NFL team has that kind of hate towards the Vikings.

    I’m disappointed that you wouldn’t call out your fellow packer fans from posting such hate?

    I thought you and other packer fans were above all this hate?

  34. golforepar says: Jan 17, 2016 5:02 PM

    So how was the parade for winning the NFC North?

  35. purpleguy says: Jan 17, 2016 5:12 PM

    That’s the price Kirby paid for signing a guaranteed contract — it’s binding both ways. Some folks apparently need a short lesson on contract law, although admittedly most likely are more familiar with DWI laws.

    It’s almost as funny as the claim Vikings fans have alienated NFL fan bases — a reading of the comment section after the Cardinals’ big win demonstrates precisely what NFL fans think of those same cheesers (who spend more time on Viking articles than their own).

  36. movike says: Jan 17, 2016 5:15 PM

    You know, the majority of commenters on here are intelligent, thoughtful fans who genuinely want to add something to the conversation … Then there are the small-brained individuals who look up from their bowl of Froot Loops in their mother’s kitchens and decide to make a stupid, irrelevant insult to another team and/or their fans. Wouldn’t it be nice if this were set up like Amazon, where a comment can be removed if the majority of readers decide that “this comment doesn’t add to the conversation”? Ahhh, it’s nice to dream …

    Anyway, it seems to me that this whole thing is just about the Browns realizing the Vikings wouldn’t have to release Wilson for a lateral move, so they changed the name to make it look like an upgrade, like a janitor being pronoted to a custodial engineer. I think the Browns and the Pollard Alliance need to pay a little better attention to the rules before they start crying foul.

  37. h0metownzero says: Jan 17, 2016 5:20 PM

    It could be that he objects to having to work with the child beater.

  38. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 5:32 PM

    It would be nice movike.

    But packer fans can’t help but hating anything to do with a Viking story, even while they claim they are nice and humble. I don’t know why.

    What’s the point of signing a contract, if you aren’t required to honor it?

    If you don’t like the terms of the deal, don’t sign the contract. I had to deal with that when working in the television industry.

  39. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 5:36 PM

    Continue to look at all the hate filled packer posts.

    Now packer fans are mad because the Vikings won the division that they claimed was theirs at week 5 or 6.

    What type of parade are packer fans planning?

  40. bballnut50 says: Jan 17, 2016 5:38 PM

    No Packer fans, he is so lucky he gets to stay with a winning up & coming franchise !Not a has-been/never will-be team!#Skol

  41. filthymcnasty3 says: Jan 17, 2016 5:52 PM

    I suspect that all these Viking fan tantrums have to do with the outpouring of league wide respect and love for the Packers and their beloved fans over the past 24 hours. This has made their degenerate fans even more bitter than usual.

    Add to that all the tricky underwear stain in laundries throughout MN today, and it becomes easier to understand all their emotional outbursts.

  42. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 6:03 PM

    All these Viking fan tantrums?

    Read your own post.

    The only tantrums occurring are from packer fans.

    Packer fans should be blaming the packer team for not winning the division, and Aaron Rodgers for blaming the coin toss.

  43. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 6:04 PM

    Now packer fans are mad because the Vikings won the division
    —————
    Nobody and I mean nobody cares much about not winning division titles as long as their team is in the playoffs with a chance to contend.

    It’s understandable that Vikings fans lose their mind over such an achievement when that’s the closest thing to a championship you can lay claim to.

  44. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 6:05 PM

    They should have let him go. It’s clear that he had at least some influence over the child beater and failed miserably.

    He probably told him it was ok to whip his kid and told him he should ask for a raise afterwards.

  45. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 6:07 PM

    The only tantrums occurring are from packer fans.
    ——–
    You really need to step back into reality. Blair Walsh did it….so can you! Responses to Vikings fans emotional and bitter outbursts does not make a tantrum. It’s people having fun at your expense because you guys embarrass yourselves so frequently here.

    I don’t think NFL football is the sport for you. You should go cheer for the WNBA Champion Minnesota Lynx!

  46. minnescrotums says: Jan 17, 2016 6:33 PM

    I think everyone outside of purple horn blower land realizes that the Vikings were extremely lucky to win the division this year. It’s not about “trending” so much as it is about “the packers having many players–including a top 5 wr–injured over the course of the season.”

    Enjoy your offseason. We all know that the Packers can simply pick up a few backup offensive linemen and linebackers in the draft to become truly a team with zero holes, while the Vikings have a huge hole at QB, RB (I’m sorry, but a dude who literally fumbles in every playoff game is a huge hole), and kicker, just to name a few.

  47. ariani1985 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:48 PM

    What time does turd bay play week? The late Ron Wolfe said the cheese was going to win it all this spring! What is going on in turd town?

  48. screamingyellowzonkers says: Jan 17, 2016 8:14 PM

    I haven’t made any tantrum outbursts on this thread.

    But here are the tantrum outbursts by packer fans:

    “Who wouldn’t want to get out of there…Minnesota”
    “Vikings franchise is a joke”
    “You chuckleheads have alienated every fan base”
    “So how was the parade for winning the NFL north”
    “It could be that he objects to working with a child beater”
    “Add to that all the tricky underwear stains in laundries throughout MN today…….”
    “He probably told him it was ok to whip his kid……”

    And then you claim Viking fan tantrums?

    I guess this is what packer fans consider humble and calm serenity that shows how honorable the packer fan base is?

  49. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 8:36 PM

    And then you claim Viking fan tantrums?
    ———–
    Maybe you should google the definition of the word tantrum.

  50. zackselzman says: Jan 17, 2016 9:06 PM

    The term Run game coordinator does not have an actual universally agreed upon meaning. But with Todd Walsh the term describes someone involved in coordinating the run defense, so that would most definitely be a step down, not up. If you look at Todd Walsh’s bio it goes on and on about his role as Defensive Line Coach and throws in a line about Running Backs Coordinator as an afterthought. If the team ended up also having a running backs coach and he reported to the Running Backs coordinator.. then that would be a step up, but no team in the league does that.

    I think this is right up there with Waste management specialist being a promotion for a garbage man. You still empty the cans into the truck.

  51. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 17, 2016 9:22 PM

    The term Run game coordinator does not have an actual universally agreed upon meaning.
    ——-
    Doesn’t really matter if it has been “universally” agreed upon. The term “coordinator” by very definition means it’s a higher level position than a position coach. There are run game coordinators in college and the NFL.

    So to say that there is no such thing like Teddy mentioned is flat out false. Vikings fans are always making up “facts” here and most of the time they don’t even bother to look them up…or they home nobody else will and call them out on it.

  52. powersnatch0102 says: Jan 17, 2016 9:35 PM

    26-20.

  53. filthymcnasty3 says: Jan 17, 2016 9:45 PM

    I applaud the Packer faithful for setting such a fine example, and not being dragged into the gutter with these degenerate Viking fans. You are an inspiration to real NFL fans everywhere.

  54. kvnhlstd says: Jan 17, 2016 10:26 PM

    Two things
    – Why would you force a guy to stay when he wants to go elsewhere… do you really think he will give you 100 percent moving forward. Dumb move not letting him leave, future assistant coaches are watching, they will remember.
    – Quit hanging your hat on NFC North titles or banners, who cares… if your team’s goal is just to win the North… your a loser. The goal should always be to win the NFL championship. Now because we always troll each other…
    0-50

  55. wyrdawg says: Jan 17, 2016 11:40 PM

    John Wooten of the Fritz Pollard Alliance

    That’s twice I’ve seen this guy’s name concerning incoherent posts about “unfair” hiring practices. Who is this guy and why is this now relevant?

    Anyone care to tackle that one?

    Ah, nevermind. I’ve already lost interest.

  56. Damidwesterner says: Jan 18, 2016 12:33 AM

    I wouldn’t consider going to the Browns as a promotion. It’s more like being guaranteed to be fired in a year or so when Haslem cleans house yet again.

  57. igocommando says: Jan 18, 2016 1:59 AM

    I also would like to applaud the pactard faithful. It’s refreshing to see that the pactards have accepted that they won’t be winning the NFCN for quite some time and that they are actually giddy about competing for wildcard births.

  58. 440Barracuda says: Jan 18, 2016 2:32 AM

    filthymcnasty3 says:
    Jan 17, 2016 5:52 PM

    This has made their degenerate fans even more bitter than usual.

    ————————————-

    If Viking fans are the bitter ones, why do you spend the vast majority of your so called life trolling Viking news feeds?

  59. stellarperformance says: Jan 18, 2016 10:16 AM

    igocommando says:
    Jan 18, 2016 1:59 AM
    I also would like to applaud the pactard faithful. It’s refreshing to see that the pactards have accepted that they won’t be winning the NFCN for quite some time and that they are actually giddy about competing for wildcard births.
    ///////////////////////////////////////////

    I know winning the division is very important to Viking fans. That is the only accomplishment they can hang their hats on. The Vikings have won it a lot of times.

    But one thing leads to another. They couldn’t have twenty-eight post-season losses without getting there frequently. It’s the NFL record for the most post-season losses since the 1970 merger.

    You can post all you want about the Packers struggles, but no team has failed in the post-season as much as the Vikings.

    Not even Cleveland.

  60. zackselzman says: Jan 18, 2016 10:32 AM

    “The term “coordinator” by very definition means it’s a higher level position than a position coach. There are run game coordinators in college and the NFL.

    No it doesn’t. People reporting to you means you have a higher level position as a coach in the NFL. They can call him Head Running Backs coach or Senior Running backs coach or Running Game coordinator or whatever the hell they want. Unless people report to him then it is of no consequence. You are either a head coach, an Offensive Coordinator, a Defensive Coordinator or are just an assistant coach. According to the rules he could get an actual promotion, which would be offensive coordinator, and still get turned down by the Vikings. Senior Vice President of ball washing and jock straps won’t cut it.

  61. Vikings Trolls How Many Super Bowls Have You seen Your Team Win???? says: Jan 18, 2016 12:29 PM

    It’s refreshing to see that the pactards have accepted that they won’t be winning the NFCN for quite some time and that they are actually giddy about competing for wildcard births.
    ————-
    It’s awfully cute to see Vikings fans go off the rails and get completely ahead of themselves, just because they one a single division title in the last 5 years. Packer fans probably should have crowed more about the previous 4 in a row, but we are better than that.

    Nothing has really changed much. The Packers got caught on a down year after losing a Top 5 WR and the young players who needed to step up failed to meet expectations. Guess what? They will have the same WR core when Nelson is back as they had when they were the #1 offense in 2014. 😦

    Meanwhile…..all we’ve learned about the Vikings is that they have a decent defense and an offense that is completely carried by an child beater who is old for a RB.

    The QB showed absolutely no progression and it’s now clear to everyone that he doesn’t have the skill set to ever be a Top 16 QB. He has the brains and desire, but just doesn’t have the physical abilities with his noodle arm and lack of athleticism. But at least you have found a decent long term backup.

  62. whatjusthapped says: Jan 18, 2016 12:55 PM

    He should be released from his contract, maybe he is just opposed to working with Child abusers? He should get to leave and on his way out the door, simply acknowledge that the Vikings gave him an opportunity to coach and say, Shank you very much.

  63. In Teddy We Trust says: Jan 18, 2016 1:00 PM

    ducksk says:
    Jan 17, 2016 4:01 PM

    Vikes franchise is a joke, always has been, most likely always will be. Fact.
    ________

    If that’s true, then I would really hate to be a fan of a team that finished behind them in the standings.

  64. mnfaninil says: Jan 18, 2016 5:23 PM

    No different than a maintenance engineer vs. a janitor, or a nutrition movement coordinator vs. a waitress. Hue can come up with whatever title he wants, but its still just an assistant job, not a promotion. Not even a nice try Jackson, we’ll keep our good coaches.

  65. speakadatrut says: Jan 19, 2016 2:01 PM

    inallsincerity says:
    Jan 17, 2016 3:43 PM
    The NFL replaced Lovie Smith with Hue Jackson, but they adhered to the Rooney Rule. No progress made here, five of 32 coaches are Black, six minorities altogether. What a joke.

    ___________

    16% of the American population is African American. SO, 16% X 32 teams = 5.12 (rounded down = 5). The problem is exactly…WHAT!?!
    Let’s see…the % non-Hispanic whites in America is 60%…the % of African American players what 70%. Is there an ‘Alliance’ lobbying for more white players to be drafted/signed in the NFL?

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