Confirmed: Mike Zimmer Almost Ended Kirk Cousins After Infamous Sideline Shove

Are Minnesota Vikings’ fans sick of the ‘Mike Zimmer and Kirk Cousins hated each other’ narrative yet? I thought I was last week, when Mike and Kirk’s unsavory relationship went viral across national media platforms for things we already knew about at a local level.

But then, I listened to Paul Allen‘s show on KFAN monday morning and gained some inside knowledge (on an infamous moment) that I now feel obliged to share. Everybody remembers this moment from last season. When Kirk Cousins grabbed and pushed Mike Zimmer on the sideline, in celebration of a Greg Joseph game winning kick.

PA Claims Foul Play

First, it’s important to remind everyone about how close Mike Zimmer and Paul Allen are. Can we call them best friends? Maybe not. But the two are very close friends and have even owned racing horses together. If anyone in sports media would know how Zim felt in that moment, it’s PA, who was noticeably crushed when Zimmer and Spielman (another good friend) were fired.

On his show Monday morning; Paul Allen told his audience that Mike Zimmer did, in fact, snap for a split second after Kirk Cousins’ celebratory grab and shove. That Zim “wanted to go”, before catching himself and gaining clarity of the moment. Listen for yourself, starting at the 26:25 mark (transcribed below).

“Back to like the middle of the season. Home game and it’s a victory. Yeah, Zim snapped when Cousins pushed him. And looking back at it, former head coach got that side-eye and rage steaming from his nostrils! And he wanted to go. But then, he didn’t want to go. Kirk sensed a free shot during the working relationship and he got one in.”Paul Allen (KFAN Radio)

The Context

Is it possible that Paul Allen, when he let the quote above roll off his tongue, was throwing personal opinions into the radio wind? That he wasn’t actually speaking to a situation he has inside knowledge on?

Maybe… but it’s unlikely. PA hates to openly conjecture about situations like this, especially when they involve people he knows. Even though it’s kind of his job… Something I’ve complained about on Twitter in the past.

Before the quote above, Allen was highlighting how important it is for quarterbacks like Kirk Cousins, Kyler Murray and Matt Stafford to be comfortable in their situation. That mid-tier starting quarterbacks need talent around them and unlimited trust flowing between player and coaching staff. Something Kirk and Zim didn’t have.

I wasn’t sure we’d ever get an answer on what happened on the US Bank sidelines after that win. But after hearing PA, I’m convinced that Kirk Cousins almost got popped by Mike Zimmer after that victory.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan