WHEN, NOT IF?
It appears Vikings owner Ziggy Wilf is taking the old wait and see approach with head coach Brad Childress, hoping, as Pioneer Press‘ Jeremy Fowler reports, for an epic comeback and Super Bowl berth.
Don’t we all.
I’d be happy to tolerate Childress if that happened and in retrospect, I’d look back and say it was worth it.
But I’m not betting on it.
I guess if you haven’t fired him already, it’s the right approach. There is still a chance for the Vikings, however slim that chance may be. But after this season of frustration, after watching this team stumble it’s way through the 2010 schedule, there’s no real reason to believe they’re gonna turn around Cowboys-style and play lights out Sunday against the Packers.
So if the Vikings lose Sunday at Mall of America Field at the Metrodome, should Ziggy nod to the executioner and let the ax fall on Brad Childress’ Vikings career?
I think the answer is clearly yes. One way or another, I just don’t see how Childress can return as head coach in 2011.
If the season is lost, then you salvage what you can. Fire Childress and appoint defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier interim head coach.
If anonymous sources are to be believed, Frazier is respected within the locker room by players and fellow coaches alike. A change of command would give the head coach the authority to find a graceful exit for Brett Favre by finding an excuse to put him on the PUP list or injured reserve and give Tarvaris Jackson and Joe Webb the rest of the season to prove themselves.
It would also, not incidentally, give Leslie Frazier the rest of the season to prove himself and to see how the team responds to him at the helm.
Let’s not forget that Frazier has plenty of culpability in this season’s meltdown. While the defense played damn good for the first few games, keeping us in games while the offense bumbled along, it has not played up to its ability for the past four games.
Whether it’s stopping the run, locking down in the red zone, or capitalizing on offensive miscues by creating turnovers, this defense has not been what we’ve become accustomed to. While Frazier deserves credit for their superb play last year, he also deserves blame for their dismal execution this year.
And it’s not like he’s been creating something out of nothing like Tony Dungy used to do back in the day when he’d lose superstars like Chris Doleman and still cobble together a dominating defense.
Frazier’s had a star-studded lineup to field and still, this is what we’ve got.
But that doesn’t mean the team wouldn’t respond with him as head coach. Giving him the interim tag let’s us find out.