Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier has interviewed with six NFL teams about their head coaching jobs over the past three offseasons but his seventh sit down might have been the most interesting. And, perhaps, most discouraging.
Frazier was scheduled to go through his interview with Seattle executives this morning in the Twin Cities -- we have no reason to believe it didn't happen -- at the same time reports were circulating that the Seahawks had an agreement in place with Southern Cal coach Pete Carroll.
It sounds like the Seahawks were trying to tell anyone who would listen that their desire to talk to Frazier wasn't simply to satisfy the Rooney Rule but from all appearances that's exactly what the interview was about. If that's the case, it's too bad and Frazier definitely deserves better.
Frazier is a class act and is a legitimate head coaching candidate in the NFL. He's certainly long past the point where he's happy to get an interview just so he can go through the process in order to gain experience. In fact, he interviewed with the Buffalo Bills for their head coaching job on Thursday and looks to have a real shot at that opening.
Reports circulated Friday that the Seahawks had requested permission to speak to Frazier but he had said no thanks, probably because he knew about the deal with Carroll. (The subject about why the Seahawks suddenly think Carroll can be a successful NFL head coach is another story.) However, Frazier either changed his mind or never said no to the Seahawks in the first place because Friday night it became clear he would interview.
Perhaps, Frazier had given his word that he would discuss the job with the Seahawks and then found out later about the impending deal with Carroll. Frazier strikes me as the type of guy who would go through with the process simply because he said yes and felt he had to be true to his word.
However, if the Seahawks flew executives to Minneapolis in order to satisfy an NFL requirement and nothing more, they did not do right by the league or by Frazier.
Update: Peter King reported on NBC (and we picked up from Pro Football Talk) that Frazier's interview had lasted 4 to 5 hours Saturday and was ongoing when the King was on the air. Even if he isn't going to get the Seattle job, and it certainly looks that way, Frazier is a strong contender for that Buffalo Bills job.