Getting to Know … Denny Green

In this installment of “Getting to Know”, the Purple Jesus digs into the mind of former Vikings coach Dennis “Denny” Green and picks his brain about a variety of topics …


Name: Dennis “Denny” Green aka “The Sunset Music Band”

Age: 60 years young, ha!

Favorite Coaching Location: Ok, this one is pretty simple. Naturally, I started off as an assistant in the coachin’ ranks, right? Yeah, that was a pretty good time. Naturally, I learned the most from coachin’ with Bill in ‘Sisco. Also got to meet some good jazz cats out there too, ha! But no, my longest tenured spot and most successful was most definitely Minnesota. Great memories there, and of course some not so great ones too! But that was easily my favorite, especially with their music scene there. I even got to meet Prince a couple of times. Really enjoyed it. Nice place.

Least Favorite Minnesota Media Personality: You know, despite Minnesota being a great place to coach, there were some real bad dudes out there too, ok. I’ll tell you guys what, I really didn’t like that Dan Barrerio guy on the radio. No, sir. He was a real negative reporter, probably still is. He didn’t apparently like that I had the Vikings as a winning team my first six years there, ha! Not good enough for him! Hey, Danny, sorry about not winnin’ every game for you, I bet you’d be upset that we didn’t win more games too, right? Ain’t no room for cry babies, Danny! Ha! That man, he was a real nay no.

Why Did You Take a Knee in ’98: You know what, I get asked this question a lot. It’s not a hard answer. The game was tied, so we weren’t losin’, but if you looked closer, we weren’t winnin’ either. Now, I hear all the time, “Hey! Denny! You got the NFL’s quickest scorin’ offense! Why not take a shot down field and set up a field goal with your golden legged kicker? Why go conservative now?” Well you know why? Because I love pullin’ defeat out of the jaws of victory, and I know that it’s a strong Viking tradition. I couldn’t take that away from the state, no sir! I just helped the team live up to tradition.

Favorite Local Minnesota Band: Oh, good question, good question. You ever seen that Pizza Hut commercial with that band? They’re all rockin’ out and they have all those girls in the crowd goin’ crazy? “Dial 6-5-1-4-8-8-8-8-8-8, Pizza Hut delivery is always late!” or somethin’ like that, I dunno, I’m no singer, ha! I think the band is G.B. Leighton, or somethin’. Good stuff, good stuff. Oh yeah, there is also a guy that goes by the nickname VSS on the web pages, Vikings web pages. He’s in a band, although I can’t say what band, but oh man, they are good too! Ha!

What Was Really Behind that Chicago Game Blow Up: Ok, you know, it’s funny. When I was in Arizona I learned a lot of things, right. Arizona is kind of like Minnesota for old people, so I guess it was appropriate that I was coachin’ there, ha! But ok, they knew a lot about bein’ let down and havin’ a strong tradition of failin’, just like in Minnesota. So, ok, think about this. We’re on the biggest stage of the NFL, Monday Night Football, John Madden  at the time, big deal. We were winnin’ and I thought, “No, sir, this can’t happen. It’ll change expectations around here, ruin their tradition.” So what do I do? Same thing I’ve always been doing. Tryin’ to make people happy, ha! Not ruin tradition. I made sure we lost the game, and while the players were all being cry babies, I had to send them a message, right. Hey! No crybabies, Johnny Depp! Ha! Good movie. So I lost it, shook them up a bit, drew more attention to the team and now look. Because of me they were in the Super Bowl, am I right?

What You Have Been Doing Since Arizona: Oh boy, lot’s of stuff, lot’s of stuff. I have been doin’ some coverage of games with Westwood One, Thursday night NFL, right. Good stuff there, love football. I still enjoy goin’ outdoors, goin’ Fishing Across America and filmin’ my big catches. What a way to live, right? Ha! I’ve also specialized in a lot of sports marketin’ and consultin’. Need a catch phrase for your team? I’ll crown ‘em! Need advice on how to build a stadium? I’ll help! Need a motivational speaker to light a fire under your team? Call me up! It’s great, great stuff. I suppose the other big news is that this old bear is getting back in the coachin’ cage with the UFL as the coach of the ‘Sisco team. I’m goin’ to be the next Walsh, ha! No, I’m just jokin’ around. Should be lots of fun though.


Special Talent You Are Not Known For: Ha, well, it’s not much of a secret but I can be a mean old drummer! That’s my passion; makin’ sweet music. I like to do jazz. I’ve even played with the Minnesota Orchestra before, doin’ some percussion work. Music, it’s always been a passion of my family. I even got a group that I jam with, The Sunset Music Band. Let me tell you, it’s not too bad. No sir. We like to let loose. Me? I can never let loose after a loss when I’m coachin’ though. Just don’t have the right passion, the fire, to make sweet music. My music is a celebration of life and our world, and after a loss there’s nothin’ to celebrate! In those times, ha! I’ll just play the kazoo.

Favorite Musician to Drum to: Oh boy, that’s a tough one. I always like playin’ a little back beat to some Miles Davis, or Thelonious Monk, right. Great, great jazz music. I enjoy a little up beat tunes too, older stuff you know, James Brown, Syl Johnson, Leon Haywood. Ha, it gets me in a sexin’ mood, you know? All right.

Final Parting Words: Hey, thanks for this interview, this is fun stuff. I’m looking forward to coachin’ again, teachin’ kids how to live right. I hope that the city of ‘Sisco doesn’t have too high of expectations though, ha! Oh, and uh, be sure to watch Fishing Across America on your local Fox Sports Network, contact me about sports marketin’ and consultation, buy my “Crown Their Ass” memorabilia, my book “No Room for Crybabies”, and my compact disc from The Sunset Music Band. And if you’re lookin’ for a way to get rich quick, contact me about some excitin’ opportunities, ha!


About PJD

I once saw Paul Edinger kick a 56-yard field goal for the Minnesota Vikings against the Green Bay Packers to win a game in the Metrodome. It was exhilarating.