Over the past four seasons, the Minnesota Vikings have seen four different offensive coordinators come and go and with that, little pieces of the offense have come and gone as well. Sprinkle in new players each year including a new quarterback last season and you've had a lot of change over the past few years for the Vikings offense.
That's why one of the cornerstone's of the team's offense wide receiver Stefon Diggs was happy to hear that at least heading into next season the Vikings will retain some of the stability on offense that they were able to develop this season with Kevin Stefanski being retained as the full-time offensive coordinator.
Stefanski only had three games this season to put his fingerprint on the offense that was already in place, but in keepings Stefanski you'll keep the language, the tactics, the strong points and some of the other intricacies of this offense with a few improvements from someone who knows this team inside and out sprinkled in as well.
The acting assumption is that Kevin will be able to get the most out of Diggs, Thielen, Cook, Rudolph and Cousins as he knows them better than anybody having worked so closely with them going back to all of their first seasons with the Vikings.
Below is the transcript from a conversation that the team reporters had with wide receiver Stefon Diggs yesterday...
Q: What is your initial reaction to Kevin Stefanski being named the full-time offensive coordinator?
A: Just like before – we had a hundred-percent confidence in him before when he got the job [on an interim basis], and it’s not going to change. Buying in won’t be hard because we’ve seen him do it, we’ve had him, and it’s going to be a good place just to get the ball rolling.
Q: There’s been a lot of change on offense recently. Does this bring consistency?
A: At all positions, you know, when you’re going into a new year, having some familiarity with a guy you’ve been working with, and he’s been here for a while, so it’s not like he’s a brand-new guy. For us, it’s nothing really new. It’s just for us to go out and kind of continue to build that relationship and keep working at it – that’s going to be the key part.
Q: Have you had time to reflect on the changes that were made?
A: Just as far as him and how he commands the meeting room and his approach to each and everyday. He’s the same guy, you know what you’re going to get out of him, and he’s a guy you want to play for. He believes in his players. And he’s going to push you. He’s going to want the most out of you every day, and when it’s time to make plays, he’s going to let his playmakers just play.
Q: Simplifying the offense was said to be a key at the end of the season. Did a reduction of plays help you play any faster?
A: Not really. Just from my standpoint and a receiver in general, you just take what’s thrown at you. So as far as it being a little bit or a lot, you just have to handle it the best way you can. You know, we’re not really big on excuses, so you just have to make it work.
Q: What has been your favorite part of working with Stefanski?
A: Just his approach to the game. On game day, he’s riding with all his guys, and he plays aggressive.He’s not scared of anything, and he believes we can do anything, as far as running the ball well, throwing the ball well, whatever it is, he has confidence in us, and we appreciate it.