Candidates to Take Over as Minnesota Vikings General Manager

Vikings General Manager
Spread the love

Following the conclusion of the 2021 NFL season, the Minnesota Vikings off-season is in full swing and the organization didn’t waste any time in turning the page on head coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman.

The firing of Zimmer wasn’t a huge surprise, but the inclusion of Spielman caught some off guard. Regardless, the Vikings are cleaning house while trying to regroup and reload in 2022.

There are a few intriguing candidates that could take over as head coach in Minnesota, but perhaps an even bigger objective and hire will take place in the front office and general manager. With Spielman now out of that role, there are a few candidates worth keeping an eye on to fill that hole as the key Vikings decision-maker.

Five Potential Candidates For Minnesota Vikings General Manager

Jamaal Stephenson

If Vikings ownership decides they want to replace Spielman with a candidate from within the organization, perhaps one person who could get interest for the job is co-director of player personnel, Jamaal Stephenson.

Stephenson, who took part in his 20th season within the Vikings personnel department, was promoted to co-director of player personnel before the 2021 season. This came after George Paton left his assistant general manager role to take on the general manager spot with the Denver Broncos.

In Paton’s absence, Stephenson and a few others within the front office took on bigger roles in decision making alongside Spielman, meaning Stephenson has had some input on the talent that has been brought into Minnesota and the conversations that went into those decisions.

Over the year or so in his current position, Stephenson went from mainly being on the road to primarily spending time in Minnesota, stepping into more of a daily right-hand-man role alongside Spielman. If the Vikings are looking for some familiarity for the next general manager, Stephenson would be a guy to keep an eye on.

Louis Riddick

When it comes to people outside of the NFL who still have a strong pulse on the league, ESPN’s NFL and Monday Night Football analyst Louis Riddick is a prime candidate who could make a return to the league in a position such as this one.

Riddick has worked for ESPN ever since his departure from the NFL in 2013 and has taken on an even larger role with the television network over the last few years. His name has been thrown out there as a possible general manager candidate in the last few off-seasons, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see his name appear once again this year.

After his playing career in the NFL, Riddick began his career as an executive in 2001 with the Washington Football Team, where he was a pro scout and director of pro personnel from 2001-07. From 2008-13, he worked in the Philadelphia Eagles from office, serving as a pro scout, assistant director of pro personnel, and director of pro personnel.

Riddick knows the game, is well respected, and is well connected, and it might be time for him to finally return to the NFL before the 2022 campaign kicks off.

Mike Borgonzi

A front office guru whose name has continued to pick up steam over the last year or so is Kansas City Chiefs assistant general manager Mike Borgonzi. Borgonzi has worked closely alongside Chiefs general manager Brett Veach the last few seasons, and his promotion to assistant general manager before the 2021 campaign only increased that level of involvement.

Borgonzi has been with Kansas City since 2009, having served as a scout, co-director of player personnel, director of player personnel, and director of football operations before being promoted to assistant general manager. He has continued to gain more and more responsibilities within the organization and could be ready to take on an even larger role elsewhere as a general manager.

Notably, Borgonzi helped play a crucial role in scouting and ultimately drafting players such as Kareem Hunt and Travis Kelce, among others. He has the ability to not only spot talent, but has shown the capability of handling an expanded role well which could translate well to the Vikings.

Thomas Dimitroff

When it comes to a candidate that already has experience as a general manager, perhaps former Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff would be a person Minnesota takes a look at to take over things in the front off in 2022.

Dimitroff has been out of the NFL since he was fired by Atlanta in 2020 along with Falcons head coach Dan Quinn. He served as general manager of the Falcons from 2008-20, helping field a team that reached the Super Bowl and put together a solid team on an annual basis.

During his time in Atlanta, Dimitroff drafted players like Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, and Calvin Ridley, among others. He is capable and has the experience to get a second shot at being a general manager in the NFL, whether or not the Vikings decide to give him that shot or not.

Ed Dodds

Among front office personnel throughout the NFL, one of the more respected people who continues to make a name for himself is Indianapolis Colts assistant general manager Ed Dodds. Dodds has worked very closely with Colts general manager Chris Ballard, having a strong input in the decisions made by the front office and organization as a whole.

Given his experience and knowledge learned over the years, Dodds is ready to take on a general manager role for himself, and Minnesota could ultimately be the opportunity for him to do so starting in 2022. Dodds, who has been with Indianapolis since 2017 after spending 10 seasons with the Seattle Seahawks as a senior personnel executive, was a finalist for the Detroit Lions general manager opening last off-season and has had his name thrown around for other vacancies as well.

Dodds has played a key role in helping a few different franchises build solid rosters and championship-caliber teams, and he is more than ready to take on a general manager role for his own if he decides to depart from the Colts.

Main photo:
Embed from Getty Images