ESPN's Bottom Line - Version 2.0

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Warm Afternoon in Minnesota

The Minnesota Vikings fired their Head Coach Brad Childress yesterday afternoon.  This move would have been surprising if it had happened as recently as this Summer.  The Vikings made it to the NFC Championship game last year but have had such a calamitous season already in 2010 that this move seemed inevitable.  Minnesota is off to a 3-7 start and just lost 31-3 to their bitter division rival the Green Bay Packers.

This dysfunction of this season began as soon as the last one ended, when Brett Favre gave his usual uncertainty about playing.  At this point ESPN put Rachel Nichols up in a tent outside whatever building he was in to give us minute to minute updates about what his clothing choices might mean with regard to his future with the Vikings.  EVERYONE thought this was annoying.  However, it took a visit from 3 teammates just before the last week of training camp to convince him to come back.  Almost immediately after that his favorite receiver from 2009, Sidney Rice, announced that he needed hip surgery which would sideline him for half the season.

As the Vikings offense sputtered and the trade deadline approached rumors swirled that Brad Childress was interested in bringing Randy Moss back to where he started his NFL career.  Chilly sent a 3rd Round draft pick to the Patroits (who really don't need any more draft picks, thank you very much) in exchange for Moss, the future Hall of Famer.  Approximately 30 days, 13 catches, 174 yards, and 2 touchdowns later, Childress waived Moss.  He was waived for a number of reasons including performance but the most damning was his poor "locker-room" demeanor.  Although this was not the first clue that Childress was no longer in control of the team, it is really the one that stands out the most.

After that we had heard reports that Brett Favre doesn't get along with Chilly.  Then we heard that he and their young WR Percy Harvin actually had to be separated during a practice.  After this past week's game it was obvious that this team just wasn't interested in playing football for Brad Childress anymore.  After the game players were asked if Favre will continue to start despite throwing 17 interceptions through the first 10 games and their response was, "we're not even sure who would make that call."

Well now they have their former Defensive Coordinator Leslie Frazier to make the call.  Frazier is a guy whose name has come up several times for Head Coaching openings over the last two years and it looks like he finally has his shot.  Despite being named the "Interim" Head Coach a report by ESPN's Chris Mortensen yesterday leads me to believe that the interim titles we'll see with in-house being promoted mid-season will turn into full time positions by next year.  Due to the CBA negotiations coming up and the likelihood of a lockout, it is going to be very difficult to get a new head coach in with enough time to properly prepare his team for an NFL season even if it is 18 games long.  Watch for Frazier and Jason Garrett of the Cowboys to be the full time Head Coaches of their teams next season.


Justin said...

This Thanksgiving I am thankful that Brad Childress is no longer in my life. Hopefully Leslie Frazier can do a better job as head coach than he has a defensive coordinator this year

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