According to John Clayton, at least. The team hasn’t made an official announcement, plus there’s been no indication that Darrell Bevell has accepted the job offer, but Clayton is a pretty reliable source.
Bevell has been Minnesota’s offensive coordinator since 2006, but recently found himself out of a job when new head coach Leslie Frazier hired Falcons QB coach Bill Musgrave to be the Vikings’ new OC. Bevell had previously been an assistant coach in Green Bay from ’00 – ’05, so Seahawks GM John Schneider is familiar with his work. He was also on staff for Hasselbeck’s last season with the Packers, although Bevell was wide receivers coach at the time (he didn’t get promoted to QB coach until ’03) so his familiarity with the QB is probably limited at best.
Anyway, here’s a quick look at the Vikings’ offensive production under Bevell’s tenure:
|2006||4,943 (23rd)||3,123 (18th)||1,820 (16th)||282 (26th)||Brad Johnson (14)
Tarvaris Jackson (2)
|2007||5,379 (13th)||2,745 (28th)||2,634 (1st)||365 (15th)||Tarvaris Jackson (12)
Kelly Holcomb (3)
Brooks Bollinger (1)
|2008||5,288 (17th)||2,956 (25th)||2,332 (5th)||379 (12th)||Gus Frerotte (11)
Tarvaris Jacskon (5)
|2009||6,074 (5th)||4,156 (8th)||1,918 (13th)||470 (2nd)||Brett Favre (16)|
|2010||5,039 (23rd)||3,097 (26th)||1,942 (10th)||281 (29th)||Brett Favre (legally dead)
Joe Webb (2)
Tarvaris Jackson (1)
(No suitably thematic team colors for the data table today — trying to read text against a purple and yellow background stings the eyes like lemon juice.)
Aside from the season that Grandpa Favre ate (with the help of a declining o-line and multiple injured receivers), the Vikings’ offense more or less improved every year under Bevell’s direction (especially in points scored, which I hear is kind of important). I listed the starting QBs he had to work with too because I want you to share in my amazement that he was able to gain any yardage at all through the air with those guys under center. I mean, now that the guy’s shown that he can squeeze one last reasonably productive season out of the mortal remains of guys like Brad Johnson, Gus Frerotte, and Brett Favre, I’d definitely like to see what Bevell could do with Hasselbeck.
The decision to draft Adrian Peterson in ’07 did a lot to improve the team’s offense all by itself, but the uptick in passing yardage at the expense of rushing yards in ’09 suggests that Bevell is more than willing to modify his offense to take advantage of his personnel’s strengths (in this case, working Favre’s last productive year for all it was worth).
Installing a new offense for the third consecutive year is far from ideal, but judging by these figures the team could do a lot worse than hiring Bevell. If nothing else, with him and Tom Cable working together Seattle might very well end up with that improved rushing attack we were all promised when Greg Knapp rolled in to town in ’09.