Jim Souhan analyzes the local sports scene and advises you to never take his betting advice. He likes old guitars and old music, never eats press box hot dogs, and can be heard on 1500ESPN at 2:05 p.m. weekdays, and Sundays from 10 a.m.-noon.

Find him on Twitter

Frazier's tenure taught lessons

Posted by: Jim Souhan under Vikings coaches, Vikings defense, Vikings management, Vikings off the field Updated: December 30, 2013 - 9:33 AM

It's usually difficult to invest much emotion in NFL coaches. They're mostly vagabond mercenaries who travel from city to city, knowiing they'll most likely be fired within two or three years, and they often display all the interpersonal charm of vagabond mercenaries.

Leslie Frazier was, and is, different. He brought with him a remarkable personal story and a unique personal touch. He was the rare NFL head coach who became beloved by people at all levels of his organization, who made sure he ate lunch with different employees every day, who was about more than winning and losing.

Of course, losing did him in. He won 18 games in three full seasons as the Vikings' head coach, and that number justifies the Wilfs' decision to fire him, whether I agree with it or not.

It's easy to blame the head coach when an NFL team loses, but I never believe it's that simple. With the exception of Joe Gibbs, every great coach in recent NFL history has been defined by the play of his quarterback. I believe that if Frazier had been given a franchise quarterback, he would still be employed. If he was capable of winning 10 games with an erratic Christian Ponder, what could he accomplish with a real NFL quarterback?

Rick Spielman has a good batting average while running the Vikings' draft, but his choice of Ponder cost Frazier his job.

So while the Wilfs and Spielman begin their search for a new coach, what will matter most is the combination of coach and quarterback upon which they settle.

Frazier has been blamed for the choice of Bill Musgrave as offensive coordinator. I've been given indications that wasn't his decision alone. Alan Williams wasn't his first choice as defensive coordinator, either.

If you want to blame Frazier for something, blame him for not playing a bigger role in defensive play-calling, and for not forcing Musgrave to use Cordarrelle Patterson more early in the season.

I was lucky enough to spend time with Frazier in his hometown of Columbus, Ms. I saw the remains of the shack in which he was raised, and met with people who are still close to him.

He's a remarkable human, and if he had been given a good quarterback, he'd stil be employed.

-----------

I'll be on 1500ESPN (that's 1500AM) at noon to talk about Frazier. My Twitter handle is @Souhanstrib.

  • 15
  • Comments

ADVERTISEMENT

more twins blogs

See all similar bloggersFull story

Post By Category

Professional baseball (149) Vikings (203)
Gopher coaches (48) Gopher quarterbacks (13)
Gopher recruiting (2) Gopher road games (3)
Gophers disciplinary action (2) Gophers recruiting (2)
Gophers spring football (4) TCF Bank Stadium (22)
The Big 10 (25) NCAA: football (14)
Gophers coaches (60) Gophers players (39)
Tubby Smith (38) Williams Arena (16)
Gophers post season (6) Gophers roster moves (4)
Golf (29) Soccer (4)
Twins news (38) WNBA (7)
Wild news (31) AFC (9)
Bears (24) Ex-Vikings (15)
Football on TV (77) Lions (17)
NFC (69) NFL draft (27)
NFL post-season (30) Packers (52)
Super Bowl (47) Vikings coaches (102)
Vikings defense (48) Vikings fans (31)
Vikings injury report (15) Vikings management (77)
Vikings off the field (28) Vikings offense (67)
Vikings quarterbacks (41) Vikings road games (14)
Vikings rookies (4) Vikings roster moves (3)
Vikings special teams (2) Vikings training camp (5)
Off the field (5) On the road (22)
Quarterbacks (33) Rookies (3)
Roster moves (1) Vikings draft (41)
Ron Gardenhire (120) Target Field (142)
Twins fans (153) Twins management (202)
Twins offense (112) Twins transactions (92)
NBA playoffs (40) Wolves coaches (72)
Wolves draft news (28) Wolves guards (37)
Wolves injury report (7) Wolves management (77)
Wolves players (59) Wolves trade talk (14)
Wolves training camp (11) All-Stars and honors (84)
Fighting (2) Wild coaching (25)
Wild management (35) Wild off-season news (3)
Wild player moves (4) Adrian Peterson (64)
Anthony Herrera (2) Antoine Winfield (16)
Ben Leber (1) Bernard Berrian (7)
Brad Childress (29) Brett Favre (56)
Brian Robison (3) Bryant McKinnie (3)
Cedric Griffin (5) Chad Greenway (11)
Chester Taylor (5) Chris Kluwe (2)
Darrell Bevell (6) E.J. Henderson (4)
Jared Allen (29) John Sullivan (6)
Kevin Williams (5) Leslie Frazier (53)
Madieu Williams (2) Pat Williams (3)
Percy Harvin (26) Phil Loadholt (3)
Ray Edwards (1) Ryan Longwell (9)
Sage Rosenfels (1) Sidney Rice (10)
Steve Hutchinson (7) Tarvaris Jackson (12)
Tyrell Johnson (2) Visanthe Shiancoe (5)
Brad Childress (29) Darrell Bevell (6)
Leslie Frazier (53) NHL news (9)
2010 Winter Games (13) Olympic curling (1)
Olympic hockey (8) Olympic skiing (4)
Olympic village (11)

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT