Did Vikings’ History with Jim Harbaugh Get in the Way of Draft Day Trade Talks?

Minnesota Vikings, Jim Harbaugh
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings may appear to be on the right path now, led by general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell. Yet, many will never forget the time when it appeared that Jim Harbaugh would become the next Vikings head coach after Mike Zimmer. What a time to be alive.

Despite Harbaugh’s then-moderate success as the Michigan Wolverines head coach, the former NFL QB appeared eager to return to the NFL. Reports suggested Harbaugh was ready to leap at the opportunity to coach in Minnesota, but the Vikings never actually made him an offer.

After coming up short in his coaching interview in Minnesota, Harbaugh had no choice but to return to Ann Arbor since there weren’t any other NFL teams showing interest at the time. It’s possible the entire experience left Harbaugh with a bitter taste in his mouth, possibly even grudges against the Vikings?

Is Jim Harbaugh Still Bitter About His Minnesota Vikings Interview?

Jim Harbaugh
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

According to a report from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, Harbaugh may have tried to get back at the Vikings’ decision-makers over draft weekend when Minnesota was trying to negotiate a trade up in the first round.

Related: 10 Best Minnesota Vikings QBs of All-Time: Where is Kirk Cousins?

“The Vikings and Chargers talked. And one league exec wondered if Minnesota passing on Jim Harbaugh for the head-coaching opening two years ago would have caused Harbaugh to be awfully stubborn on any potential deal between the sides.”

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler on Jim Harbaugh/Minnesota Vikings

Would Harbaugh really be that petty? In the NFL, we wouldn’t rule it out. After all, he had no incentive to help the Vikings get their QB of the future. He’s trying to get to the promised land too.

Related: Vikings UDFA Fights Teammate in Insane Locker Room Brawl

Ironically, the Vikings landed Harbaugh’s former QB in J.J. McCarthy, and there’s no bigger fan of the former Wolverines leader than the new Chargers head coach. While the Vikings weren’t able to execute a trade with the Chargers, they may have ultimately gotten what they wanted anyway, landing McCarthy without having to cough up a ton of extra draft capital. They didn’t need Harbaugh’s help.

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