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Former Falcons DC Mike Zimmer Says Bobby Petrino 'Gutless Bastard,' 'Ruined Lives,' 'Didn't Have Nuts'

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All right -- so now there's at least one Cincinnati Bengal we can approve of besides just DE/LB Michael Johnson and DT Geno Atkins, Georgia Tech and Georgia products respectively. The Cincinnati Enquirer shares some quotes from Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer on Arkansas head coach Bobby Petrino, who abandoned the Falcons midseason to take the Razorbacks job:

He ruined a bunch of people’s lives, a bunch of people’s families, kids, because he didn’t have enough nuts to stay there and finish the job. That’s the truth. You can put that in the Arkansas News-Gazette.

What brought all this on? Zimmer was asked about going back to Atlanta for the first time since Petrino left. Zimmer replied, "I was never even there, as far as I'm concerned." And then the thunder struck.

Zimmer worked as Petrino's defensive coordinator during the Falcons' legendary and magical 2007 season. Good luck finding a Falcons fan who disagrees with anything Zimmer said, though at least a handful of Razorback fans are bizarrely lockstep in their inclination to blame the whole misunderstanding on a massive ESPN conspiracy orchestrated by Arthur Blank.

Some more:

“He came in and said he resigned, he would talk to us all at a later date, walked out of the office and no one has ever talked to him since. Not that anybody wanted to.

“He’s a gutless b—–d. Quote that. I don’t give a s—.”

When told that we might might not be able to use the B word, Zimmer went one better: “How about this, gutless MF. You can use that.”

How do we go about rooting for Zimmer to have a good day on Sunday while also rooting for a Falcons win? Anybody? We'd also like to remind everyone once again that the Falcons have a better record than Arkansas does since Petrino left, not to mention the same number of all-time SEC championships.

Zimmer was last in the news for coaching a Bengals win three days after his wife Vikki died. Compared to Zimmer we're all cowards and gutless bastards, but I don't think that was his point.

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Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.