Vikings seek answers to flag day

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 18, 2012 - 11:26 AM

After Sunday's 11-penalty meltdown, coach Leslie Frazier wants his team to balance extra effort with intelligence.

In the moments immediately after Sunday's unraveling in Indianapolis, Vikings coach Leslie Frazier acknowledged the obvious, admitting his team had set its own booby traps in a 23-20 loss to the Colts.

Little by little, the Vikings came undone with penalty after questionable penalty after "My goodness, what in the world was he thinking?" penalty.

When asked to explain how so many mistakes piled up, Frazier shrugged with a blank stare.

"I don't know," he said from a podium inside Lucas Oil Stadium. "We have to go back and look at what we're doing and try and figure out what we have to do better."

So Monday provided Phase 2 of "The Great Penalty Inquisition." And this time Frazier was asked what can be done to rectify such problems going forward.

"You keep harping on the importance of not doing things that can be self-inflicted," he said.

The easiest reaction to Sunday's flag fest is to blame the coaching staff. It's a logical path to go down after nine players drew 11 penalties, many bone-headed.

The Vikings were versatile with their blunders. They committed five offensive penalties for 50 yards, four on defense for 30 yards and two more on special teams for 25 yards.

With that many miscues, the evidence points to a squad that's disorderly and unfocused in key moments.

But where is that thin line between coaching awareness and discipline and players exhibiting it?

Rookie left tackle Matt Kalil, often lauded for his aptitude, delivered a late hit to a defender 30 yards away from where quarterback Christian Ponder had just run out of bounds.

And Jared Allen, a four-time Pro Bowler dived after and hit quarterback Andrew Luck as he was running out of bounds 15 yards shy of the first down sticks on third down.

Allen's gaffe, with little regard for the down-and-distance, was the most high-profile example of a usually reliable standout erring. And it provided the Colts with a new set of downs that they eventually turned into three points.

"I like his effort, like what he was trying to get accomplished," Frazier said Monday. "Just have a little awareness of where you are. ... We coach them to play hard. And what Jared was doing on that particular play, that's exactly what you want to see from an effort standpoint. But there is a balance. You want to play smart. You have to have a little recognition in certain situations, and [recognize] when you are possibly crossing that line."

Inevitably, Monday's discussions shifted toward the replacement refs, with several players adamant the flags they drew were bogus.

Receiver Percy Harvin questioned the offensive pass interference penalty he incurred after getting tangled with Colts safety Antoine Bethea on a fourth-quarter deep ball. Harvin, who labeled the flag "a terrible call," stared at the refs waiting for an explanation.

"He didn't say anything," Harvin said. "He was just looking at me. I was looking for what he was talking about and he didn't give me anything."

Left guard Charlie Johnson, meanwhile, might have had the most legitimate beef, flagged for holding on the Vikings' opening drive when replays show he executed a solid block.

"It was not a hold," Johnson said. "Absolutely not a hold."

That penalty washed away a 9-yard Adrian Peterson run that would have given the Vikings a first down at the Colts 21. Instead it was second-and-12 from the 40 and they eventually settled for a field goal when momentum for a potential touchdown march seemed to be building.

At the end of a narrow loss, the sting intensifies.

"That's what makes me so angry," Johnson said. "We came out moving the ball. And for a drive like that to get stalled out on something that's not a penalty is ridiculous. That was bad.

"To me, it seems like they're maybe trying to call something so they can say, 'Oh, something happened. We better call something.' I think the speed of the game may be tripping them up. Some of the things that are being called you never see called."

On Sunday, 11 penalty calls -- good, bad and everything in between -- left the Vikings with ample frustration.

Dan Wiederer •

  • related content

  • Read the full replay: Vikings Chat with Dan Wiederer

    Tuesday September 18, 2012

    See what Dan Wiederer and Vikings fans talked about during their weekly Live Chat -- and see the poll results on how fans thinks the Vikings will do against the...

  • 'Nightmare' play aims the focus on LB Henderson

    Monday September 17, 2012

    Henderson was burned by Andrew Luck's 30-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne in the final seconds of the first half in the Vikings' 23-20 loss to the Colts on Sunday.

  • Chart: Flag day for Vikings

    Monday September 17, 2012

    1 Vikings, second-and-2 from the Indianapolis 30

  • Video: Frazier talks about loss to Colts

    Monday September 17, 2012

    Vikings coach Leslie Frazier is bothered by the Vikings’ defensive ineptitude in the final two minutes against the Colts...

  • The Vikings were penalized 11 times in Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts, including a roughing the kicker penalty.


    Up next: Noon Sunday vs. San Francisco • Mall of America Field • TV: Ch. 9 (100.3-FM, 1130-AM)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Detroit 69 FINAL
Philadelphia 89
Portland 94 FINAL
Cleveland 99
Sacramento 102 FINAL
Toronto 119
Boston 98 FINAL
Minnesota 110
Dallas 94 FINAL
Houston 99
Denver 93 FINAL
New Orleans 85
Brooklyn 102 FINAL
Atlanta 113
Oklahoma City 92 FINAL
New York 100
Charlotte 86 FINAL
San Antonio 95
LA Clippers 94 FINAL
Utah 89
Washington 98 FINAL
Phoenix 106
Toronto 1 FINAL(SO)
New Jersey 2
Pittsburgh 0 FINAL
Washington 4
Chicago 3 FINAL
Los Angeles 4
Temple 86 FINAL
UCF 62
Winthrop 75 FINAL
Coastal Carolina 68
Lafayette 59 FINAL
Colgate 54
Northeastern 60 FINAL
Drexel 65
Wake Forest 76 FINAL
Florida State 82
Rhode Island 64 FINAL
Fordham 63
Delaware 82 FINAL
James Madison 88
South Carolina 58 FINAL
LSU 64
New Hampshire 63 FINAL
Maine 58
Seton Hall 80 FINAL
Marquette 70
Binghamton 68 FINAL
American Univ 54 FINAL
Navy 64
Elon 65 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 82
Wright State 76 FINAL
Oakland 84
Minnesota 58 FINAL
Penn State 63
Duquesne 55 FINAL
Richmond 86
South Florida 52
Hartford 66 FINAL
Stony Brook 72
Albany 47 FINAL
Vermont 44
Hofstra 79 FINAL
William & Mary 100
UNC-Asheville 74 FINAL
Longwood 64
Radford 84 FINAL
Char Southern 77
Holy Cross 0 Postponed
Loyola-Maryland 0
Duke 73 FINAL
Notre Dame 77
Texas Tech 36 FINAL
Oklahoma 81
Oregon State 55 FINAL
Arizona State 73
Morehead State 82 FINAL
Austin Peay 69
Drake 69 FINAL
Bradley 57
Lehigh 62 FINAL
Bucknell 68
Rice 48 FINAL
Houston 59
Missouri State 57 FINAL
Illinois State 67
Loyola-Chicago 47 FINAL
Wichita State 58
Nebraska Omaha 64 FINAL
South Dakota St 86
Northern Iowa 59 FINAL
Southern Ill 52
Louisville 81 FINAL
Boston College 72
St Johns 74 FINAL
Creighton 77
East Carolina 58 FINAL
Memphis 70
Georgia Tech 70 FINAL
Miami-Florida 50
Miss State 73 FINAL
Ole Miss 79
Clemson 68 FINAL
NC State 57
Indiana 67 FINAL
Purdue 83
Kansas 64 FINAL
TCU 61
Oregon 56 FINAL
Arizona 90
Air Force 66 FINAL
San Jose St 52
Stanford 84 FINAL
Washington 74
Rider 56 FINAL
Siena 49
Dayton 76 FINAL
Richmond 62
Eastern Kentucky 53 FINAL
Jacksonville St 73
Saint Josephs 0 Postponed
Saint Louis 0
Binghamton 55
Akron 60 FINAL
Ohio U 72
Ball State 72 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 55
Memphis 56 FINAL
Cincinnati 44
East Carolina 32 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 87
Murray State 59 FINAL
Eastern Illinois 75
Kent State 63 FINAL
Central Michigan 65
UT Martin 64 FINAL
Tennessee St 58
Eastern Michigan 56 FINAL
Western Mich 83
Bucknell 61 FINAL
Lehigh 76
Indiana 57 FINAL
Michigan State 72
Colgate 56 FINAL
Lafayette 58
Fordham 66 FINAL
Davidson 45
Duquesne 76 FINAL
St Bonaventure 64
George Mason 66 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 70
Detroit 59 FINAL
Youngstown St 58
Army 0 Postponed
Boston U 0
Loyola-Maryland 0 Postponed
Holy Cross 0
Tulsa 74
Oklahoma St 54 FINAL
Kansas State 52
West Virginia 57 FINAL
Texas Tech 73
Denver 56 FINAL
South Dakota 82
Northwestern St 46 FINAL
Central Arkansas 63
Austin Peay 67 FINAL
SIU-Edwardsville 87
Kansas 61 FINAL
Iowa State 56
Bowling Green 50 FINAL
Northern Ill 67
Penn State 64 FINAL
Minnesota 75
San Jose St 80 FINAL
Air Force 83
Boise State 82 FINAL
Colorado State 83
Utah State 51 FINAL
Wyoming 86
San Diego State 50 FINAL
Fresno State 57
Nevada 52 FINAL
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters



Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9




question of the day

Poll: Who will win the Super Bowl?

Weekly Question