P.J.R. chart: A look at tenures for Vikings coaches
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The Vikings have had four ownership groups:
The original five owners and remnants there of owned the team from formation of the franchise in 1960 until December 1991, when a coalition of 10 owners put together by former CEO Mike Lynn completed the purchase.
The Group of 10, as they were called without great affection in the Twin Cities, sold to Red McCombs in the summer of 1999.
McCombs sold to Wilf family, with Zygi Wilf as the lead owner, in a deal that was approved by the NFL on May 25, 2005.
With that history in mind, here are the tenures for Vikings coaches:
Bud Grant, 18 seasons, 1967-83, 1985.
He resigned after the 1983 season and was brought back by Lynn to rescue a 3-13 team in 1985. He resigned again after that season, and remained on the payroll as a consultant, per the contract Lynn had offered to get Grant to return.
Dennis Green, 10 seasons, 1992-2001.
He was hired by Roger Headrick, Lynn's replacement as CEO, and would also coach three seasons for McCombs. Green resigned with one game left in 2001, to avoid being fired by McCombs at season's end.
Norm Van Brocklin, 6 seasons, 1961-66.
He was hired by the original ownership group as coach, immediately after quarterbacking Philadelphia to the 1960 NFL Championship. He resigned after the 1966 season, following quarterback Fran Tarkenton's insistence on a trade because of his inability to get along with Van Brocklin. The public stance of ownership and General Manager Jim Finks was that Van Brocklin could have stayed, but Finks in truth was pleased to have a chance to bring in Grant from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Jerry Burns, 6 seasons, 1986-91.
Burnsie was passed over by Lynn for Les Steckel when Grant resigned the first time, The same oversight did not occur the next time, and Burns served six seasons. Headrick wanted to replace him after 1991 and Burns made it easy by resigning.
Brad Childress, 4 seasons, plus 10 games, 2006-10.
The Wilfs had Childress in place less than a week after firing Mike Tice. He took the Vikings to the NFC title game in January 2010, but the 2010 season turned chaotic and he was fired by the Wilfs after a 31-3 loss to Green Bay at the Metrodome in the 10th game of the season.
Mike Tice, 4 seasons, 2002-2005 (plus one game as interim at end of 2001 season).
Tice was promoted from offensive line coach to replace Green by McCombs. He coached one season for the Wilfs in 2005, went 9-7 and was fired 20 minutes after the last game by the new owners.
Leslie Frazier, 3 seasons, 2011-current (plus six games as interim at end of 2010 season).
Frazier was elevated from interim coach and given a four-year contract in January 2011. He has one year left on that deal, which management chose not to extend after the 10-6 playoff season of 2012.
Les Steckel, 1 season, 1984.
Steckel tried to be a disciplinarian but without the resume to carry it off. His players clearly quit on him over the final weeks of the schedule. Lynn made a lucrative offer to Grant to return, both to rescue the Vikings from a 3-13 season and to counter the attention Lou Holtz was receiving as the coach of the Gophers.
Speculation is strong that Frazier is among the NFL coaches who will be fired on "Black Monday,'' the day after the end of the regular season.
If that's the case, the Wilfs will have been responsible for three of four shortest coaching tenures in Vikings history -- which covers eight head coaches and 53 seasons.