Norv Turner: Mike Zimmer and I had “different ideas”

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Former Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner, who abruptly quit as the team began to struggle this season, says he and head coach Mike Zimmer had opposing points of view that couldn’t be bridged.

“Mike and I just had different ideas about what we needed to do and how we needed to do it,” Turner told Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times. “It wasn’t going to work, so I removed myself from it.”

Although Turner did not say exactly what those different ideas were, the combination of those comments with Zimmer’s past statement that he needed to get back to doing things “my way” suggests that both men saw the differences between them as significant.

Once among the most respected offensive coaches in the NFL, Turner indicated that he is not retired and isn’t done coaching. He’s just done coaching for Zimmer.

“I got fired with three games to go in Washington [at the end of the 2000 season], and that was weird,” he said. “But this is totally different. I’ve talked to some of my friends who have retired, and they say, ‘Retirement’s not that bad. You should make sure you give it a real good look.’ But no.”

So don’t be surprised if Turner is back in the NFL next year, on some other staff, where he and the head coach agree on the right way to do things.

48 responses to “Norv Turner: Mike Zimmer and I had “different ideas”

  1. Watching or attending every game for the Vikings, I just feel Norvs offensive is outdated and certainly not going to work when your O-line is depleted with injuries. Their backups were terrible!

  2. After the Bye, the Vikings offense managed two incredibly poor showings at Philly and Chicago. My guess (and it’s just a guess) is that it didn’t sit too well with Zimmer and he wanted some adjustments, so they could, you know, win more.

    Whatever happens, a promising season has been sidetracked and may be more than likely lost now. Shoulda seen it coming when Bridgewater went down.

  3. The only real question is why’d it take Zimmer over 2 years to realize Turner’s offense wasn’t going to work? Most of us saw this after his first 8 games in Minny. Good luck to whoever hires this guy… He hasn’t had a new idea since the late 90s.

  4. Zimmer’s just another in a long line of self-entitled “My way or the highway” head coaches from the Parcells coaching tree.

    It worked for Belichick, Coughlin and Payton while not so much for Mangini, McDaniels, Ray Handley, Bobby Petrino, Chris Palmer, Al Groh, Tony Sparano, Romeo Crennel and Todd Haley.

    It didn’t fly for Saban in the NFL but he sure has it down at the college level. Fassel had some success but there’s a reason why a Super Bowl coach hasn’t been hired by any NFL team since being fired by the Giants.

  5. Just look at the offense now that Shurmur has been the OC. It’s a much faster timed offense and the run game has at least had a bit more variety. I’m sure Norv just had so much confidence in what he’s done for so long that he didn’t want to change things up.

  6. NFL coaches all seem to have nine lives, to the point where you’re left wondering if there is a secret rule that gives them lifetime job security (limited to the age of 89).

  7. Report comment
    tjacks7 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 11:56 AM
    The only real question is why’d it take Zimmer over 2 years to realize Turner’s offense wasn’t going to work? Most of us saw this after his first 8 games in Minny. Good luck to whoever hires this guy… He hasn’t had a new idea since the late 90s.

    —————————————————–

    yah, that new coordinator is so creative and exciting with the 3-5 yard pass plays …. but hey, the qb has a high completion percentage and a wr caught 13 passes twice, wow …. I was forced to listen to approx one quarter of the two worst homer radio guys ever on my Thanksgiving drive and the one screamed out Cordarrel Patterson is taking over the game….he caught 5 passes for 15 yards in the game …. talk about morons

  8. Turners offense will ONLY work for teams set up like the Cowboys . You have to have a O-line that dominates or you just look bad on Offense . There are not many teams that can give their QB five seconds to survey the field and make a unobstructed pass.

  9. Shurmur isn’t an upgrade, but this guy is among the most overrated coaches of the last 25 years. The only times his offenses have been championship level was when he had Hall of Famers at every position in Dallas. Even when he came in and took over what Cameron had developed in that offense with Rivers under Schottenheimer, he struggled with him initially and mostly underachieved with him most of his career. But for some reason he gets this reputation as a guru of some sort.

  10. As we found out in San Diego. Norv Turner’s offense is built around having a good offensive line. When the OL stinks the offense which is built off of a strong run game and play action passes is completely inept. You cannot hide a poor offensive line in his offense.

    A more flexible coach would put the QB in the shot gun and shorten the pass plays to hide the OL issues. This is not Norv he loves the 5 and 7 step drops and gets the QB killed.

  11. When they were 5-0, people were ready to crown Zimmer best coach of all time. It’s such a bummer that they would have to play their remaining 11 games like everyone else does.

  12. stiffarm13 says:

    yah, that new coordinator is so creative and exciting with the 3-5 yard pass plays …. but hey, the qb has a high completion percentage and a wr caught 13 passes twice, wow …. I was forced to listen to approx one quarter of the two worst homer radio guys ever on my Thanksgiving drive and the one screamed out Cordarrel Patterson is taking over the game….he caught 5 passes for 15 yards in the game …. talk about morons

    The new offensive coordinator is extremely creative compared to Norv. It took him one week to figure out getting the ball into playmaker hands was a good idea. Norv couldn’t figure that out in 2+ years.

    Everyone knows that the Vikings offense is just trying to keep their defense off the field to give them a rest and a break. They’re not going to blow anyone out or be blown out. The offense has done a much better job under Shurmer. The untrained eye sees a short pass but most of us know that it’s a pass only to pick up a few yards instead of a run because the oline can’t open a hole.

    They’re still limited by their protection at having 3rd stringers at each tackle spot. Until that is resolved deep shots will be few and far between. This offense is already ahead of Norvs but it still needs a line.

  13. The funny thing is that Norv is wrong AND Zimmer are wrong.
    Norv was getting Bradford killed, and now Shurmer won’t tell Bradford to try to win.
    Childress and Johnson did the same thing; never throw it past the sticks on third sown and see if anyone notices.
    What us fans don’t realize is sometimes a coach or player is incompetent, and they do things to hide it as long as possible.
    If Slay really planned to jump Thielen’s route, a savvy veteran would have thrown deep to the uncovered Treadwell, but Bradford is just a guy getting a paycheck.

  14. In reality the offense stunk even when they were winning. Just had some timely passes and good defense getting them through the first 5.

    The offense has below avg players and a ok qb. As long as you put a lot of good players around him, he can manage the game for ya, but that is it.

  15. I think the only reason Norv didn’t retire years ago is to get his son a job.His son should tell him “it’s ok I don’t need you.I will sell insurance or real estate.” If Norv doesn’t retire and his son follows him to his next job then that’s what it’s all about.

  16. How’s your new stadium looking in Oakland? Enjoy the move.

    It’d be nice if the offense could manage a meager 20 points. Sure could win a few more games.

  17. They aren’t exactly tearing it up without turner. They have adjusted their scheme to compensate for inadequate O line play. It consists of a lot of 3 step drops. And fans complain about the conservative offense. 13 pts against Detroit D is not great, this coming from a Lions fan. Case keenum threw 4 TDS against us for crying out loud. But they are limited in what they can do right now

  18. tjacks7 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 12:44 PM
    stiffarm13 says:

    yah, that new coordinator is so creative and exciting with the 3-5 yard pass plays …. but hey, the qb has a high completion percentage and a wr caught 13 passes twice, wow …. I was forced to listen to approx one quarter of the two worst homer radio guys ever on my Thanksgiving drive and the one screamed out Cordarrel Patterson is taking over the game….he caught 5 passes for 15 yards in the game …. talk about morons

    The new offensive coordinator is extremely creative compared to Norv. It took him one week to figure out getting the ball into playmaker hands was a good idea. Norv couldn’t figure that out in 2+ years.

    Everyone knows that the Vikings offense is just trying to keep their defense off the field to give them a rest and a break. They’re not going to blow anyone out or be blown out. The offense has done a much better job under Shurmer. The untrained eye sees a short pass but most of us know that it’s a pass only to pick up a few yards instead of a run because the oline can’t open a hole.

    They’re still limited by their protection at having 3rd stringers at each tackle spot. Until that is resolved deep shots will be few and far between. This offense is already ahead of Norvs but it still needs a line.

    —————————————————-

    Winners, WIN …. Losers , MAKE EXCUSES …. every team has injuries …. that offense under Shurmer 297.75 yds/gm …. season avg 294.9 yds/gm …. what a difference …. who’s a playmaker on that offense ? …. some more goofy homer talk

  19. nic3roc0123 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 11:46 AM

    The more I hear about Mike Zimmer the more I begin to dislike him. It’s becoming apparent why he has been a DC for most of his career.
    —————————–
    Why, because the truth hurts? Zimmer is just brutally honest and in my opinion the better man. Zimmer took it hard that Norv just quit. Zimmer did a press conference and was classy. Norv meanwhile has given several and each one is basically, don’t blame me for my crap offense…

  20. I have yet to see SB change a play at the line of scrimmage . The whole reason to go out and get a veteran QB is so he can see things and make plays . I liked the Bradford signing at first but now believe he is far too timid and willing to settle for check downs .

  21. The Colts could use him. It seems like the Colts never recovered from the presence of Bruce Arians. He was a veteran coordinator, and Pagano didn’t have to pay any attention to that side of the ball. The thought of working with Andrew Luck would make Norv take a long look. Chudzinski and Pep Hamilton were easily influenced by the ultra conservative Pagano. Norv Turner will be able to convince Pagano that “throw” isn’t a dirty word.

  22. dynalee10 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 1:31 PM

    I have yet to see SB change a play at the line of scrimmage . The whole reason to go out and get a veteran QB is so he can see things and make plays . I liked the Bradford signing at first but now believe he is far too timid and willing to settle for check downs .

    —-

    He’s been with the team for 3 months.

    I’m surprised how well he’s done picking
    everything up in such a short amount of time.

  23. Norv is legend in the NFL. But when you look back not only on his time in Minnesota but also his last few stops, nothing has worked out. His offenses have been stale for a long time. Teams learned how to read his offense years ago. No doubt he will land another job if he wants one. But I would expect more of the same old stale game plan if he does.

  24. psubeerman21 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 12:16 PM

    Thanks for the first round pick for the average qb you won’t start next year lol
    —-

    I would be surprised if Bridgewater ever played football again. If he does, his recovery time is 12-16 months as it is now. He won’t be on the field next year, Bradford will be the QB of the Vikings next year.

    That, plus I’m pretty sure 50% of NFL teams would give up a 1st for an average QB right about now.

  25. filthymcnasty3 says:
    Nov 27, 2016 12:23 PM
    Sometimes the Viking coaches disagree on how to go about choking in the clutch.

    43 116
    —–
    Can’t really take these type of comments serious when they come from the doormat of the league.

  26. Funny how so few are mentioning the impact of AP. Say what you will about him, but his talent and muscle hid a lot of warts on this offense. Turner did a lot of things right, but his play calling without a Peterson in the lineup wasn’t working. Zimmer is lucky to have Bradford and needs him in there.

    Who’s right? Who knows? But Turner had control over the offense and Zimmer worked the defense. Comparing production shows no comparison. Zim’s a great coach. He isn’t the problem.

  27. LombardisHouse says:
    Nov 27, 2016 7:53 PM

    That’s going to attract a lot of quality OCs. Do it Zimmers way or you can leave.
    _______

    Oh really. How about just don’t do it Norv’s way or you can leave. EVERYBODY can see Norv’s way wasn’t working and is out of date- well, except the trolls.

  28. Still some boneheads criticizing the short passing game. One last time, if you have a crap o-line you will not have time to get deep. That was the discord between Zimmer and Norv. Norv still wanted 7 step drops and deep patterns.

  29. What is with the Raider trolls that show up here. Still bitter you got house at home by the Vikings? Just stop, enjoy your team, you are having a good year.

  30. People that are criticizing the short passes haven’t paid attention to the NFL. Most teams throw the majority of their pass short.

  31. r8dernation says:
    Nov 27, 2016 12:29 PM
    When they were 5-0, people were ready to crown Zimmer best coach of all time. It’s such a bummer that they would have to play their remaining 11 games like everyone else does.

    ******************************************************************************************

    Like any Raider fan has the right to talk about winning. I believe this is the first time since 1994 you have had a winning record this late in a season. Congratulations and oh I forgot your team is being run by a former Viking!!!

    To be even 6-5 at this point is a miracle for the Vikings who have lost their #1 QB, #1, RB, #1 WR for 2 games now, #1 and #2 LT, #1 and #2 RT, #1 C for 1.5 games, a couple different occasions without #1 RG and LG, #2 DT, #1 MLB, #2 CB, #2 S, a kicker who belongs in a psyche ward, and an OC that walked away midway through the season Tell me how the Raiders would be doing without Carr let alone the rest of the other pieces around him.

    Zimmer should receive a lot of praise for somehow starting this team off 5-0 and whethering what probably is the most injured team i have seen in decades if not ever. It’s one thing to lose your starting qb a week before the season and it is a complete other thing when you have lost over 15 significant players. You can only say next man up so many times before that cart falls apart.

    The funny thing is the Vikings will be fighting to the final seconds against a team on Thursday night that has virtually no starting players missing. An this is why Zimmer still to this point deserves to be mentioned with the best coaches in this league at the moment.

  32. Zimmer is a hothead. Everyone knows it. Admit it: Nobody enjoys the company of a know-it-all hothead.

    It would appear the players are tiring of it too.

  33. Zimmer isn’t a good HC, now he’s a very good DC, but he’s in over his head as a HC. I could see another disappointing year next year and the Vikings finally giving him the boot. Zimmer is the Vikings version of Jim Schwartz.

  34. It is what it is, Bradford is now getting rid of the ball in 2.1 sec/on avg and if he holds on longer the probability of a strip sack go up about 50%. There is no running room, so you get the 3 yd pass with the 2 yd run and here we are. No coach is going to fix that, it a total rebuild of the OL. Norv’s philosophy was run up the gut twice and throw a short pass on 3rd down. Shurmur is at least mixing that up ‘a bit’.

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