RandBall: Quarterbacks doomed the Frazier regime

  • Blog Post by: Michael Rand
  • December 30, 2013 - 12:49 PM

In thinking a little bit more about Leslie Frazier's tenure with the Vikings -- a six-game audition after Brad Childress was fired in 2010, plus the three full seasons after until his firing Monday -- it is startling to think about just how bad his QB situation was ... not just this season, but for the whole time he was here.

Remember ...

2010: In his six games, the Vikings had three starting QBs: Brett Favre (3 games), Joe Webb (2 games) and Tarvaris Jackson (1 game). None of those three could be considered a QB of the future.

2011: A washed-up Donovan McNabb started the first six games and raw rookie Christian Ponder started the final 10.

2012: Ponder started all 16 games, providing stability but -- as we all know now -- little beyond that. When he was injured prior to the playoff game, the Vikings were down to Webb.

2013: Ponder started 9 games, Matt Cassel started 6 games and Josh Freeman started 1 game.

So that's seven different starting quarterbacks in the 55 games Frazier coached. Some of it was in how he handled the QBs. Some of it was the QBs he was given to work with. It all added up to a 21-33-1 record, including the playoff loss. Of those 33 losses, almost half (15) were by a touchdown or less.

There are certainly numerous ways to justify the Frazier firing. One thing that would have been interesting, at least, is to see how the Vikings under Frazier would have operated with a stable, above-average quarterback situation. Because when we saw glimpses of it -- when Ponder was playing better in 2012 and when Cassel took over this year -- the Vikings didn't look too bad.

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