Vikings offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak is planning to retire, according to Pro Football Talk. Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reported that Kubiak is “leaning towards retirement” after two seasons with the Vikings.
Kubiak, 59, joined Mike Zimmer’s coaching staff in 2019 to serve as assistant head coach and offensive advisor, working with coordinator Kevin Stefanski. When Stefanski left to become coach of the Cleveland Browns after last season, Kubiak moved into the coordinator’s role.
The Vikings, who completed a 7-9 season with a victory Sunday in Detroit, finished fourth in total offense in the NFL this season, averaging 393.3 yards per game. The Vikings’ 26.9 points per game ranked 11th in the league.
Kubiak’s exit would continue a revolving door at offensive coordinator since Zimmer took over in 2014. Norv Turner was the first to hold the offensive coordinator’s position under Zimmer but he abruptly quit during the 2016 season. Pat Shurmur, who was working as the Vikings’ tight ends coach at the time, replaced Turner and held the job through 2017. He was named coach of the New York Giants after the Vikings went 13-3 and advanced to the NFC championship game.
John DeFilippo was hired off the Eagles coaching staff but didn’t even last the entire 2018 season before he was fired and replaced by Stefanski. Stefanski served as the chief play-caller for the Vikings last season, but Kubiak had plenty of input on the scheme that Minnesota ran with quarterback Kirk Cousins.
Zimmer has talked about how much he enjoyed having Kubiak on his coaching staff and being able to bounce ideas off another veteran coach. Kubiak spent time as head coach of the Houston Texans (2006-2013) and Denver (2015-16), leading the Broncos to a Super Bowl title. During the 2013 season, Kubiak collapsed on the field as he walked off at halftime during the Texans’ game against Indianapolis. He suffered a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA), which is often called a “mini-stroke.”
Kubiak resigned as the Broncos coach after the 2016 season because of concerns about his health.