With the departure of Leslie Frazier, Rick Spielman has to try and throw a Hail Mary. The fallout from recent events (Henderson’s DUI and Klewe’s article) have given us a little insight into the culture in the Vikings locker room. No one has a bad thing to say about Frazier, that’s because he is truly a nice guy. I for one, was not impressed with his defenses and wonder how he will work out in Tampa Bay. I wish him luck though, because, how could anyone not wish him the best?
Who will captain the Viking ship in 2014 and beyond and point it in the correct direction? Many on Twitter have their sights set on John Gruden and Bill Cowher, experienced coaches with a proven track records. But both have shown little interest returning to the sidelines, instead, staying behind the microphone. Others are talking about NFL coordinators like Jay Gruden and Mike Zimmer. Gruden has recently taken a job with the Washington Redskins, leaving Zimmer as a possible finalist for the job. Zimmer would be less of a players coach and more of a drill instructor. While discipline can be a good thing, those that remember the Les Steckel days know it can also backfire.
The more I hear about Mike Zimmer, the more I think that he should be our new coach. Some good people in football say he’s really good.
— Mike Morris (@thesuperstar68) January 10, 2014
I think a good coach is one who doesn’t micro manage. He should oversee all aspects of the teams on field activities, but should also let his assistant coaches coach. I for one would love to see Brian Billick back in Minnesota as head coach. Remember, he was the Vikings Offensive Coordinator in 1994-1998. While an offensive minded coach, his defenses in Baltimore were always one of the best in the NFL. The fact that Ray Lewis was the Ravens defensive leader had something to do with that, but Billick let his Defensive Coordinator run his schemes and do what he was paid to do.
While Frazier did have a successful second full year in Minnesota, going 10-6 and making the Playoffs, I think that year was an anomaly with bookend dismal seasons . There are others that need to go, namely Chris Cook and Erin Henderson. Cook has zero interceptions and is seen watching receivers making a touchdown catch as he falls helplessly to the ground. Henderson’s off field distraction are just what this team doesn’t need. Not to mention watching him hit the wrong hole on a running play and the opposing team gaining huge yardage. Audie Cole, who in my mind, has been a good replacement, is always around the ball. He might need work, but I like his natural ability.
As far as Coordinators go, these days, they are more of a magician than anything. It’s the guys that come up with new ways to disguise their schemes, than the schemes themselves, that are successful. Other coordinators are so good at making adjustments that it’s really tough to run what they want without disguising it really well.
Our quarterback situation is quite disturbing. I would have liked to see how Christian Ponder would have developed if he had a QB friendly head coach like Andy Ried. Christian’s problems are more mental than anything. He misses windows to throw to an open receiver to then either get sacked or run. Early in his career he looked like he was going to develop into a good game manager. I was at the Packer game two years ago, and he made 2 bad passes, but other than that, he made some nice throws. I can see the Vikings hanging on to him as a #3 backup.
Fans are speculating on who Spielman is going to draft with our #1 pick. Some say add more defensive studs and others have Johnny Football on their wish list. While I think Johnny Manziel would be a good fit, I highly doubt he will be around when the Vikings draft at #8 in the first round. I personally like A.J McCarron. But I can see him as a possible Ponder clone. That’s the quandary that Spielman has to deal with. Anyone who plays Fantasy Football knows it can be a Crap Shoot. I just hope we end up with guys that have talent as well as character. Guys like Jared Allen, Greg Jennings and Adrian Peterson who are always giving back to the community.
This is my first post for Vikings360 and I welcome comments. SKOL