Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Spielman on Frazier's firing: 'That decision came down on ownership'

Posted by: Master Tesfatsion Updated: December 30, 2013 - 4:14 PM

Vikings general manager Rick Spielman touched on the decision to fire Leslie Frazier as head coach during Monday’s press conference. Here’s some of what he had to say on Frazier and his assistant coaches:

On the decision to fire Frazier …

“That decision came down on ownership. The ownership hired Leslie. I was not the general manager at the time. We had a long extensive talk last night through it. But ultimately that comes down to our ownership.”

On what to do with assistant coaches…

“I talked to all the assistant coaches today. They are all currently under contract. I will meet with them on an individual basis. In order for them to go on to another team, they have to get a written permission. I will look at that on a case-by-case basis to see if that permission is granted or not.”

On why the organization decided to fire Frazier…

“Just going back and looking from when he took over. We went 3-3 I think his interim year. We were 3-13 the following year. There are some things that pop up when you look. Our road record has not been the best. The way we’ve lost some games this year, as well, but I think it’s just taking that whole body of work and digging down and analyzing everything to try to make this difficult decision.”

On what Frazier could’ve done to save his job…

"You know what, we talked about it with ownership last night. This decision -- I know there's been a lot of rumors floating around out there -- this decision was not made until this morning. We went through the process last night with the ownership, and just looked at the whole body of work since Leslie's been here. He's done a lot of very good things, but we felt, as an organization, it was the right thing to do to move forward. We have the utmost respect for Leslie and what he's brought to this organization, but again, we have to look for consistency year-in and year-out. And that's what we're going to be looking for when we bring in a new head coach: the consistency year-in and year-out, that we are competitive on the field."

On Frazier’s reaction to decision…

“Very disappointed, as anyone would be. I know he spoke specifically to Mark and Zygi today. But it’s hard, it’s extremely hard, it’s not only hard to get the news, but it’s hard to give the news as well. 

“I think Leslie was a great man. He did a very good job while he was here. I know he was well respected in this building. That’s what makes the decision so difficult.”

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Toronto 2 Bottom 6th Inning
Baltimore 5
Washington 3 Bottom 7th Inning
Atlanta 0
Miami 3 Bottom 7th Inning
NY Mets 3
NY Yankees 0 Top 6th Inning
Tampa Bay 0
Cincinnati 0 Bottom 4th Inning
Chicago Cubs 0
Chicago WSox 3 Top 4th Inning
Kansas City 0
Cleveland 1 Bottom 4th Inning
Houston 2
Detroit 5 Bottom 4th Inning
Minnesota 0
Los Angeles 2 Top 2nd Inning
Colorado 1
San Francisco - R. Vogelsong 8:40 PM
Arizona - W. Miley
Seattle - H. Iwakuma 9:05 PM
LA Angels - M. Shoemaker
Philadelphia - J. Williams 9:10 PM
San Diego - A. Cashner
Philadelphia 3 2nd Qtr 13:18
Indianapolis 10
Tampa Bay 9/18/14 7:25 PM
Atlanta
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
(5) Auburn 9/18/14 6:30 PM
(20) Kansas State
Connecticut 9/19/14 7:00 PM
So Florida
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Montreal 16 FINAL
Edmonton 33
Toronto 33 FINAL
Calgary 40
Winnipeg 9 FINAL
Brt Columbia 26
Saskatchewan 3 FINAL
Hamilton 28
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