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Trouble brewing

  • Blog Post by: Jim Souhan
  • October 23, 2011 - 1:00 PM

The Vikings are becoming more interesting for all of the wrong reasons.

Chris Cook is arrested on suspicion of felony strangulation.

A report appears from NFL.com and the NFL network that Donovan McNabb lacked a strong work ethic and didn't fully prepare himself.

Head coach Leslie Frazier calls out his defensive line, and defensive lineman Kevin Williams takes exception.

The team is 1-5 while ownership seeks approval of a new stadium plan.

This is not only a bad team, this is an organization in disarray in part because, as you've read here many times, it doesn't have a true general manager who can make decisions based on what's best for the franchise and who can be held accountable when things go wrong.

First of all, there were red flags attached to Chris Cook, and yet the Vikings drafted him, just a few years after the Wilfs issued the Code of Conduct. Maybe a real general manager would have viewed hte big picture and not taken a chance on him.

Second, the fact that someone in the Vikings' organization is leaking inside information (true or not) about McNabb after he was benched could be seen as someone in the organization second-guessing Leslie Frazier's decision to bring in McNabb. It's a piling-on move that's unecessary and hints that the decision-making group of the Vikings is not all on the same page. At least, that's the way I read it.

Third, Frazier's cache as a coaching candidate was that he was going to get the most out of his players. I admire Frazier and don't hold him solely responsible for the 1-5 record - this organization has much bigger problems than the identity of its head coach - but if key players like Williams are publicly sparring with him, that's not a good sign.

And the pursuit of a stadium makes the Wilfs more likely to be reactionary with their decisions, when what this organization needs is patience and a long-term plan to regain respectability.

This is a mess right now.

Having covered Troy Aikman, Rich Gannon and Daunte Culpepper as young quarterbacks, I can tell you that there's nothing more interesting than watching a young quarterback develop, and nothing more rewarding than watching a young quarterback learn how to win in the NFL. But Christian Ponder is going to have a tough road with this organization. They have a million flaws and yet no one decision-maker who can set the right course.

I think Ponder will probably play well today. But I don't think that will matter. Not with Aaron Rodgers facing a secondary that was porous even when Antoine Winfield and Cook were healthy.

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Upcoming: I'll be on 1500espn at 2 p.m. every weekday, and also contributing to Tom Pelissero's 6-8 show Monday and Friday. My twitter handle is @Souhanstrib, and I'll tweet from the Vikings-Packers game as much as the Metrodome wireless system allows.

 

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