Getting it right. That's what Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf and other VIkings officials kept repeating during a Wednesday news conference. A local crisis communication expert says the Vikings didn't get it right when it comes to their response.
The Vikings spoke with a room full of reporters from around the country about their response to the Adrian Peterson child abuse charge and the subsequent fallout. Peterson admitted to whipping his 4-year-old son in Texas.
"In a crisis situation, which they're in, you have to get the first steps right, and they botched them," said Bob McNaney of Padillacrt, a Twin Cities public relations company. "So now anything they do will look like it is being done for purposes other than maybe what they had in mind. In other words, no matter what their intentions were, this comes across as doing the right thing for dollars and cents, not out of common sense."
A key moment in the Wednesday news conference was when a reporter asked Mark Wilf what he would say to the child and mother in this case. Wilf paused and reiterated the team's support of Adrian Peterson.
McNaney said the Vikings fumbled their response to that question. "They had an opportunity to strip away business, strip away football, strip away sponsors and say ... we feel for you and we don't want any child to sit where you did. They absolutely missed a golden opportunity to be very very human," he said.