Vikings owner Mark Wilf backs coach Mike Zimmer, GM Rick Spielman


MINNEAPOLIS — Amid speculation about Mike Zimmer’s future in Minnesota, Vikings co-owner Mark Wilf released a statement Friday backing the sixth-year head coach, as well as general manager Rick Spielman.

“We value Mike and Rick’s leadership and we have every intent of Mike continuing as the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings and Rick leading our football operations, next year and beyond,” the statement read.

Zimmer and Spielman are under contract in Minnesota through the 2020 season. Vikings ownership synced up both of their deals during the offseason and confirmed the news to ESPN in March.

Zimmer’s name has been linked to the Dallas Cowboys job throughout the week. Dallas decided that longtime coach Jason Garrett, whose contract expires Jan. 14, will not be part of the organization moving forward, a source told ESPN’s Ed Werder.

Zimmer coached in Dallas, first as a defensive backs coach and then as the defensive coordinator, from 1994 to 2006.

There has been speculation outside the organization that Zimmer could be on the hot seat if the Vikings lose in New Orleans on Sunday. Zimmer has Minnesota in the postseason for the third time in six years, but the franchise has won only one playoff game since the 2009 season.

Zimmer is the third-winningest coach in Vikings history behind Bud Grant and Denny Green. He has a 57-38-1 record (.599) and compiled three 10-win seasons (2015, ’17, ’19). His lone playoff win was the “Minneapolis Miracle” against New Orleans in January 2018.

Spielman has been with Minnesota since 2006 and became the team’s general manager in 2012.

The Vikings will travel to New Orleans for Sunday’s wild-card game, when they will face the NFL’s highest-scoring offense while dealing with a handful of injuries in the secondary. Both Mackensie Alexander (knee) and Mike Hughes (neck) were ruled out on Friday.

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