Kyle Sloter Claims Rick Spielman and Mike Zimmer Hated Each Other

Minnesota Vikings, Mike Zimmer, Rick Spielman
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Former Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman had quite the tenure in Minnesota. He was hired as the Minnesota Vikings General Manager in 2012 and was relieved of his duties in 2022. In that span of time, Spielman hired three different head coaches: Brad Childress, Leslie Frazier, and Mike Zimmer.

Of those three head coaches, Mike Zimmer was the most successful at turning one of the worst defenses in the NFL, into a juggernaut. Zimmer also led the Vikings to the NFC Championship game during the 2017-18 NFL season.

Rick Spielman signs Quarterback Kirk Cousins

Coming off a blowout loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Championship game after the 2017-18 season, the Vikings believed they were a quarterback away from contending for a Super Bowl.

In March 2018, Spielman made one of the biggest splashes in Vikings history signing former Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins to an unprecedented three-year $84 million fully guaranteed contract. The first in NFL history, at the time.

Although this was unprecedented at the time, behind the scenes, this is likely when the Spielman and Zimmer relationship started to breakdown. It has been reported that Zimmer never wanted to sign Cousins to that amount of money, and that he wanted to spend that money on the defensive side of the ball. Regardless of what Zimmer wanted, Spielman went ahead and signed Cousins.

Rick Spielman and Mike Zimmer “hated each other”

Kyle Sloter, a former Vikings QB, had a couple of stints in Minnesota from 2017-2022. Although he never took a snap in a regular season or postseason game for any team, he did recently appear on the Onebar & Lupagus Show and revealed some insider drama regarding the Spielman and Zimmer relationship.

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According to Sloter, Spielman really liked him while Zimmer didn’t during his initial stint with Minnesota from 2017-2019. While the 2021-22 season was spiraling downwards, Spielman and Zimmer seemed to both know that the writing was on the wall for their tenures in Minnesota, and as one last “F*** you to Zimmer”, Spielman brought Sloter back in December 28, 2021. Sloter was later released a few days later on January 3, 2022.

“Spielman really liked me. Zimmer and Spielman hated each other, so Zimmer hated me. They both knew they were getting fired, so when they needed a QB, it was a last F you to Zimmer.”

Kyle Sloter via The Onebar & Lupagus Show

Out with the old, in with the new Minnesota Vikings

Overall, we’ll never really know if this is fully true or not. However, coming from a former Vikings player, their definitely could be some truth to this dysfunctional relationship between Spielman and Zimmer. Sloter isn’t the only former player to hint at this.

True or not, the Vikings relieved Mike Zimmer and Rick Spielman of their duties following the 2021-22 season. A few weeks later, the Minnesota Vikings hired current General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Head Coach Kevin O’Connell.

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The Vikings still have yet to win that elusive first Super Bowl, however, having a head coach and general manager that collaborate effectively with one another is vital for the success of the organization. Good thing for the Vikings is that Adofo-Mensah and O’Connell seem to have the opposite type of relationship as Spielman and Zimmer.

Let’s hope that continues on for a very long time.

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