Wilks, Flores will keep the 49ers, Vikings in the playoffs for years

Steve Wilks has been hired as the new 49ers defensive coordinator.

Steve Wilks has been hired as the new 49ers defensive coordinator.
Photography: Getty Images

There’s something poetic about the rich getting richer in the NFL. The latest example of a rich team making the best move for their franchise comes from a rich blind individual writing on the wall in front of him. Enter David Tepper, who unfortunately was the loudest in the room when he hired the next head coach of the Carolina Panthers and didn’t decide to keep interim coach Steve Wilks for the permanent job. Instead, he went with Frank Reich to a job that nobody really thought was a great job. It’s a C on the notebook if we’re being nice, and we have no reason to be.

Wilks hit his feet Tuesday with reports that he will be the 49ers’ new defensive coordinator. A defensive specialist with a track record of turning defenses around and elevating even already elite talent just got handed a silver platter. If the 49ers figure out their quarterback situation, they will be in multiple Super Bowls in the next five years. Combine that with Brian Flores leaving his role as a defensive assistant with the Steelers to become Minnesota’s defensive coordinator. While the Vikings defense is far from a Lamborghini in San Francisco, maintaining the turnaround started last season in the Twin Cities looks much more likely.

What is the trend with those two jobs? If you said something about clean football in response to that, clears his head. Two black coaches are qualified enough to be head coaches right now, and should be leading teams in Charlotte and Miami right now that have been disproportionately denied that opportunity instead they run the defense. That’s not a bad consolation prize, but both are poised to succeed in their new roles where they should be head coaches again soon. The most important words of the previous sentence – SHOULD BE, such as Flores and Wilks related to the former lawsuit against the NFL, the Dolphins, and others.

The Vikings have been a big mystery as to how good they really have been for most of this season. With improved defense, they don’t a threat to challenge long reigns atop the NFC North. Losing Ed Donatello for Flores is such an obvious upgrade, but Minnesota doesn’t win championships with Kirk Cousins ​​behind center, but that’s an argument for another time. The 49ers could now be a healthy quarterback away from preparing to play in the Super Bowl. Even if Brock Purdy at full strength wasn’t enough to beat the Eagles, not too many things need to change for San Francisco to win the Super Bowl. And Wilks taking over for DeMeco Ryanswho accepted the vacant head coaching position of the Texans, is phenomenal in that direction.

Instead of Carolina continuing to thrive in the worst division in football, the lifeline was given to Reich reality and does not seem promising. Flores’ trajectory in Miami is well-documented, and so is his firing Stephen Ross is still beyond comprehension, even if Mike McDaniel led the Dolphins to the playoffs this season. Two teams already clinching playoff spots this season just cemented their spots atop the NFC for a long stretch. And Wilks and Flores should thrive, making every NFL owner a weaker case for them not to be head coaches moving forward.

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