Tag Archives: NFC North

The team isn’t done making changes to its special teams

Warren is the first and only African-American chief operating officer of an NFL franchise in league history. His Vikings duties encompass overseeing marketing, finance, legal, sales, stadium development, public affairs, human resources and several other Vikings ventures.

“We first met Kevin as part of our purchasing the team and he has been a key part of our executive team since,” said Vikings owner/president Mark Wilf, who along with his brother, owner/chairman Zygi Wilf, bought the team in 2005.

“We have the highest respect for his integrity and leadership. He sets a great example on the ground for us in Minnesota. He is our feet on the ground. He has constantly helped people and players in our organization. He has let it be known that he is in support of Adrian returning. People talk about coaches having a coaching tree in this league. Kevin has a vast executive tree in this league of people he has mentored who are now doing great work for NFL teams. We are building a first-class on- and off-the-field experience with the Vikings. We have the best possible leadership in the league in Kevin to help us do that. I know I can say this — every day he looks out for the good of the Minnesota Vikings.”

One of the few weakness of the NFC North champion Green Bay Packers this past season — and one that ultimately cost them a trip to the Super Bowl — was the mediocre play of their special teams unit, which ranked 30th in Pro Football Focus’ ratings. It ultimately cost special teams coordinator Shawn Slocum his job, and resulted in the hiring of Ron Zook to fill the position.

The team isn’t done making changes to its special teams, however. Head coach Mike McCarthy told ESPN.com’s Rob Demovsky that they “need to adjust [their] special teams philosophy” heading into next season. McCarthy specifically mentioned the need to use more starters and veterans on the coverage units. In 2014, there wasn’t a defensive or offensive starter that ranked among the top-14 players in special teams snap counts, per Demovsky.