The greatest mystery in the 2013 Vikings season, one which might never completely be solved as those within the organization say all the right things, is just how and why things went off the rails -- bouncing down to 5 victories after a 10-win season in 2012. We know the team lost a ton of close games. We know the defense was awful, particularly in the secondary. We know the QB carousel was a major factor (consider: once the Vikings landed on Matt Cassel, the team was far more functional. He played at least some in every one of the team's five victories).
But we don't know for sure about this: Was it the schemes of the coordinators weighing the team down? Was it the in-game strategy or week-to-week motivation of Leslie Frazier? Was it a simple lack of talent attributable to roster mis-management on the part of GM Rick Spielman? Did players simply underperform and/or lack the ability to make up for other holes and injuries (at least until it was too late, seeing as how the Vikings were an above .500 team for the second half of the season at 4-3-1)?
The answer, most likely, is a combination of all these things.
But what we know for sure now is this: Frazier has been fired, and that almost certainly means new coordinators and new schemes will follow. With a ton of free agents and a need to start over at quarterback, the roster will be quite different, too. Spielman was quoted on the statement released by the Vikings when they announced the news of Frazier's firing this morning. That, to us, means that his job is safe and he will be around to hire the next coach and oversee the building/rebuilding of the roster.
And that, to us, means that from here on out, success or failure is on Spielman. He gets to hand-pick his coach now, rather than have a carry-over (Frazier) from the previous regime (Brad Childress). He gets another crack at finding a franchise QB, a task he has failed at so far. He gets more time to build a roster that has some very nice pieces that are his doing but also has some major holes for which he is responsible.
The coach and the entire roster will now be directly tied to Spielman, who has been with the organization since 2006 but has only held the GM title since 2012.
Sink or swim, it's on him.