Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said Friday he plans to return to Minnesota June 4 for another eye examination the following day that should determine whether he can resume coaching his team. He was told by the team to head home to his ranch in Kentucky this week and skip the team's voluntary practices to reduce the stress on a right eye that has had eight surgeries. Really, it's not been that bad that part.
Zimmer said he's watched film from each practice, texting feedback to players and also joining Vikings coaches in meetings on a daily call.
But, he noted, once a coach, always a coach: "Players are probably getting exhausted of me texting them because I'm texting them about things I see on tape". "So we can put the retiring thing or whatever to bed quickly".
He said players are probably exhausted of him texting them about their play from things he notices on tape.
Zimmer, who is entering his fourth year at the helm in Minnesota, said being away from his team has been a chore.
Last week, Ben Goessling of ESPN.com reported the latest surgery featured doctors removing an "oil bubble" from the damaged eye to replace it with a "gas bubble". "Usually I love it down here in my place but I don't love it too much this week". Despite the progress he's made, Zimmer conceded that Bridgewater still has a "long ways to go".
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He added: "I don't want to go blind in this eye". "I fished a little bit ... just stuff like that". I've been pretty smart about it. "That might take an hour and a half or something and then I'll take a break".
Zimmer also provided details on his right eye, which now contains a gas bubble. "It's like looking through a water balloon".
"I saw that in phase two..."
The bubble is created to stabilize his retina so it remains attached after the bubble dissolves.
"I can't see through the gas bubble", Zimmer said from his offseason home near Cincinnati. "He's got me off of the drops I was on to get the pressure back normalized".