Report: Vikings hire Troy Polamalu’s uncle as new running backs coach
The Minnesota Vikings will reportedly hire former UCLA offensive coordinator Kennedy Polamalu to coach the team’s running backs in the 2017 season.
In 2017, the Minnesota Vikings will have a new guy in charge of the team’s running backs as they are expected to hire Kennedy Polamalu as their new running backs coach according to the Sporting News’ Alex Marvez on Tuesday.
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— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) January 16, 2017
Polamalu spent 2016 as the offensive coordinator for UCLA, but he was not retained by the school after the end of their season. It likely had to do with the fact that the school ranked 96th (out of 128 FBS schools) in scoring offense, 92nd in total offense, and 127th in rushing yards per game under his guidance.
If his name sounds familiar to NFL fans it is likely because his nephew is former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu.
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Polamalu will be coming to a Vikings team that struggled mightily in 2016 when it came to running the ball. Minnesota ranked dead last in the NFL last year in rushing yards per game with an average of just 75.3 yards each week. A change obviously had to be made after the team finished with its lowest ranking in this category since the 2005 season (27th).
His first year in charge of Minnesota’s offensive backfield may also be the team’s first without running back Adrian Peterson on the roster since 2006.
Peterson will be 32-years-old in March and is scheduled to make $18 million next season. The next highest paid running back in 2017 will be Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy at $8.875 million and he actually rushed for more than 72 yards last year.
No word on whether or not the Vikings’ running backs coach from last season in Kevin Stefanski will remain on the staff at another position in 2017.