Older fans may remember Jerry Burns, the longtime offensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings, who eventually took over as head coach from 1986 to 1991. Burns, who previously served as the OC from 1968 to 1985, a resume of coaching consistency rarely found in any sport anymore, only posted one losing season as a head coach and guided the Vikings to the 1987 NFC Championship game.
But Burns, who passed away last Wednesday at the age of 94, may have seen his opportunities come too late and he retired from football 30 years ago.
Though his work history includes working as an assistant for Vince Lombardi as the Packers won the first two Super Bowls, as well as three finishes with the Vikings as the top-scoring offense in the NFL, and a 52-43 career record, Burns will be remembered by some as a coach who dropped more F-bombs than an episode of The Sopranos after a game against the LA Rams in November of 1989.
At one point a reporter asks, “Did you win this game?” and Burns replies, “I think we did, yeah.”
Indeed, the Vikings beat the Rams 23-21, getting a rare victory on a safety in overtime when the Rams had a punt blocked by Minnesota linebacker Mike Merriweather. Minnesota kicker Rich Karlis tied an NFL record with seven made field goals, including one with :08 left to send the game to OT.
Burns went 4-0 against the Rams as a head coach, including a 28-17 wild card playoff victory in 1988.
This one is for the older fans. Does anyone remember watching this game live?