Gary Kubiak will be the next offensive coordinator for the Vikings, NFL insider Ian Rapaport reported on Thursday morning.
Kubiak joined the Vikings last offseason as an assistant head coach/offensive advisor, implementing his offensive scheme but ceding play-calling duties to Kevin Stefanski. Now he'll be taking over for Stefanski, who left the Vikings ten days ago to become the head coach of the Browns. Kubiak becomes the team's fifth offensive coordinator in as many seasons, following brief stints for Norv Turner, Pat Shurmur, John DeFilippo, and Stefanski.
The news that Kubiak has taken the OC role comes as a bit of a surprise, as he had seemed to indicate on multiple occasions that he was enjoying his current role. The favorite for the job appeared to be his son Klint Kubiak, the Vikings' quarterbacks coach. Clearly, Mike Zimmer was able to convince the elder Kubiak to become a play-caller once again.
Kubiak will bring decades of experience to the position. He was the Broncos' OC from 1995 through 2005, before spending eight years as the head coach of the Texans, where he went 61-64 and won two division titles. Following one year as the OC for the Ravens, Kubiak took over as the Broncos' head coach in 2015 and won the Super Bowl. He stepped down after the 2016 season due to health issues, and didn't return to coaching until last season with the Vikings.
This move gives Kirk Cousins and the Vikings some much-needed continuity on offense. Kubiak's zone-blocking scheme, which emphasizes running the ball and utilizing play-action, helped the Vikings improve from 19th in scoring in 2018 to eighth last season. Kubiak's offense fueled career years from Cousins, Dalvin Cook, and Stefon Diggs.
- Is Kirk Cousins the quarterback of the future for the Vikings?
- What are the pros and cons of giving Dalvin Cook a huge extension?
- How can the Vikings improve their offensive line this offseason?
Join the conversation at InsideTheVikings by clicking the follow button in the upper right-hand corner of this page, and follow @WillRagatz on Twitter.