Is Brian Flores Going to Stick for Vikings?

Coach Already a Hot
Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Brian Flores takes over the team's defense at an introductory press conference on February 15th, 2023, in Eagan, Minnesota.

When the Minnesota Vikings kept winning during the 2022 NFL regular season, they put themselves in an interesting spot. As the record kept getting better, the defense continued to be awful.

Is Brian Flores Going to Stick for Vikings?

Ed Donatell survived because of it, and that may have been Minnesota’s undoing against the New York Giants in the playoffs. Brian Flores came in, and he may be here to stay.

The former New England Patriots coordinator and Miami Dolphins head coach, Brian Flores, was among the hottest defensive coordinator names last offseason. The Vikings explored a few candidates before landing on Flores, but it’s hard not to see he has been a home run hire.

going to stick
Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Year two of Kevin O’Connell’s tenure as head coach featured a much more stout effort against opposing offenses. Flores brought a breakneck style with his defenders swarming to the ball, and opposing signal callers constantly felt pressured. Blitzing was not sporadic by any means, and multiple players took substantial steps forward in their development.

While the quarterback position is one of concern for the Vikings going forward, one of the most impactful moves that could take place this offseason is to replace Flores. Conventional wisdom would have suggested he would be a hot commodity on the head coaching circuit, and with plenty of openings available, it seemed plausible that O’Connell would need to find someone new to lead his defense.

So far, that hasn’t played out, and the Vikings stand to benefit.

Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports.

Flores has largely been passed over for interviews, which could be his decision to stick in Minnesota. The Patriots’ job, vacated by Bill Belichick, probably had appeal but was immediately overtaken by internal option Jerod Mayo. From there, Flores would again be interviewing for any number of jobs that have varying degrees of potential success. That’s something he certainly could have explored, but it seems as though he may be happy revamping a defense instead.

Next year could be pivotal for Minnesota on the defensive side of the ball. They may need to move forward without Harrison Smith at the safety position, and while that transition has started to take place, it’s still a significant change in leadership. The cornerback room must continue developing, and finding edge rushers, whether Danielle Hunter is brought back or not, is a must.

Could Lose Brian Flores
Minnesota Vikings Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores addressed the media from the TCO Performance Center. Flores was hired in February 2023 to take over for Ed Donatel after Minnesota finished 30th in points allowed.

For the most part, Flores had a relatively intact group this season. He inherited plenty from the 2022 team and simply put them in better positions to succeed. While execution is half the battle, continued development and growth elevate players to new heights. How Flores can accomplish that and with whom, in the year ahead, could certainly appeal to him.

You always like to see good people get better opportunities, but you’d be able to call any Vikings fan a liar if they were hoping Flores was a head coach rather than Minnesota’s coordinator in 2024.

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.