Dear Mike Zimmer,
I’m writing you this note as lay on my couch after just ringing in the new year. To be determined if I’ll actually need to publish this but I hope I don’t. I just had a few words I wanted to share with you.
First off, I’m sorry. I’m sorry we couldn’t get it done together here in MN, because there is nothing more that I wanted, than for you to be the first head coach of the Minnesota Vikings to be standing at that 50 yard line hoisting that Lombardi trophy. A dream that so many of us fans want, desire, and crave.
I’m sorry for the tumultuous tenure you had to endure from the jump. No one could’ve prepared you for what you were about to go through. Starting off on having to deal with your star RB going on the Commissioners exempt list in your first season, followed by an unfortunate bad luck of a missed FG by a steady kicker in the playoffs.
You kept your head high and kept pushing forward. But right when you think you’ve moved past all the drama, the bad luck that comes with being associated with the Vikings hits you another time. You lose your promising franchise QB to a horrific Injury in practice one week before the season starts.
These types of moments start to weigh on you. But you’ve got to keep grinding. Why?Because that’s the mindset and culture you created since you arrived here in MN. Things calm down and you carry forward. But the bad luck doesn’t stop there. In the seasons coming your OC quits mid-season, you have issues with your eye, and your OL Coach and confidante suddenly passes away one week before the season. While this stops you in your tracks and your heart is aching, you have to carry on because you have a job you’re tasked to complete. I could keep going with the list of things you had to endure. But your response was always the same no matter what the situation “no one is going to feel bad for us” as you just kept moving forward.
You’ve battled adversity with grace since the second you’ve arrived here. And you’ve taught us fans that there is way more to life than football and no matter that tragedy, the sun always rises the next day.
I think that’s what I’ll miss most about you Mike Zimmer. Your candidness. Your perspective. Your passion. But most of all your personality. It’s an appreciation and testament to the person you are and how you approach your life. No matter what transpired, I knew you were ready to go to work. You never made excuses for the adversity you had to face, you just took it on the chin and carried forward. You came to this franchise when we were in need of an identity and you gave us one. A hard nosed, never give up, football team. We represented you!
So again, I’m sorry. I’m sorry for the way all this ended. You deserved better, you gave us EVERYTHING in your eight years here. You’ve sacrificed sleepless nights, your vision, your health, and your sanity. And even though this run ended, I hope you’re proud. Because you have every right to be, you gave this fan base so much to be happy about. And you’ll go down as one of the best Vikings Head Coaches we’ve ever had. And if we ever win that Lombardi trophy, I hope you smile, because even though you may not be here coaching, you were part of this franchise and will be forever.
If my sober self actually posts this and you’re actually here and still reading this, I hope you’re smiling as you reflect on your time here. I hope you’re able to take some time this offseason and enjoy your time at the Ranch with your new grandkids as I know they give you so much happiness. And wherever your future endeavors take you, I know you’ll do great.
I hope someday I’m able to meet you, shake your hand, and thank you in person. Heck, maybe even buy you a drink! But for now all I have is this letter to you in my notes tab on my phone.
Thank You Mike Zimmer, for everything ❤️
– Matt Anderson