EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — The Vikings on Wednesday announced that Norv Turner has resigned from his position as offensive coordinator.
Turner was in his 32nd NFL season and third with the Vikings.
He joined Minnesota in 2014 after one season as Cleveland's offensive coordinator and six seasons as head coach of the San Diego Chargers (2007-12).
Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said he was surprised when Turner informed him of the decision and became emotional when telling members of the media how much he enjoyed working with Turner after years of competing against him.
"Obviously, I've played against him and I knew a lot of people that were with him," Zimmer said. "Norv always made it difficult when you were playing against him, even more so. Getting to know him as a person in these last three years has been….
Zimmer's voice tailed off, and he didn't finish before he was asked a question about the offensive line.
Turner, 64, helped develop rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater in 2014 when Bridgewater was named Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Year. The Vikings didn't have Adrian Peterson for all but one game that year and managed injuries and other difficulties to finish 7-9 and with momentum that carried into 2015 when the Vikings went 11-5 and won the NFC North.
"I think Norv is a great coach, great teacher, great person," Zimmer said. "I think the thing that he's helped us with, one of the things including winning a division championship in the second year, more so than stats was understanding how we had to play as a team with the people that we had at the time.
"With the young quarterback, without a running back, the way things were going with injuries," Zimmer continued. "Part of it isn't just about statistics, it's about doing what is the best thing for the team."
Minnesota lost Bridgewater prior to the start of the 2016 season. Peterson and Matt Kalil suffered injuries in Week 2 that landed them on injured reserve, and Andre Smith was placed on injured reserve after Week 4. Yet, the Vikings opened with five straight wins before dropping two in a row on the road.
Zimmer said Turner has had "an unbelievable career."
Turner was receivers coach with the Los Angeles Rams (1985-90), offensive coordinator with the Dallas Cowboys (1991-93), head coach of the Washington Redskins (1994-2000), offensive coordinator of the San Diego Chargers (2001), offensive coordinator of the Miami Dolphins (2002-03), head coach of the Oakland Raiders (2004-05) and offensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers (2006).
The Vikings announced that tight ends coach Pat Shurmur will be interim offensive coordinator and continue his work with tight ends. Zimmer said there will not be additional changes to the staff.
Shurmur joined the Vikings staff this offseason after three seasons as Philadelphia's offensive coordinator (2013-15). Shurmur wrapped his time with the Eagles as interim head coach and worked with Vikings quarterback Sam Bradford in 2015.