When a team begins to lose, especially in frustrating ways, the drama begins to pour over from the locker room in all sorts of ways. First, Adrian Peterson’s father, Nelson, spoke on behalf of Adrian’s lack of carries lately, especially in the loss to the Detroit Lions last Sunday. Now head coach Leslie Frazier is hurting his own cause by commenting on his starting quarterback’s accuracy in press conferences.
The Boston Herald reports that Frazier said they’re specifically working on McNabb’s accuracy in practice. “Just looking at what we’re doing with his mechanics, whether it be his drops or whether it be the footwork, whatever we need to do to help improve some of those balls that aren’t quite on target.”
McNabb has a 58 percent completion rate in 2011, and his career rate is only slightly higher at 58.9. In other words, McNabb’s strength has never been his throwing accuracy. It’s always been his ability to play well in pressure situations and make plays with his feet, the latter skill obviously in decline at nearly 35 years of age.
It’s easy to say the comments given by Frazier are no big deal. After all, he’s only saying what every NFL analyst and even casual fans are likely saying in Minnesota at this point. But note that while every fan is crying foul over Matt Cassel, the Chiefs aren’t saying a word publicly. Todd Haley isn’t hanging his quarterback out to dry. Why? Because that’s what head coaches are supposed to do.
The Herald also reports that Frazier commented on first round choice Christian Ponder saying he was ready. It’s another jab toward McNabb, intentional or not, since he’s the obvious replacement. Again, you don’t hear Haley commenting on Ricky Stanzi to any degree. That’s because Haley knows better.
If the Vikings are going to get things together, it looks like it will be in spite of their coach rather than because of him. He’s definitely not helping his cause by making questionable calls in games, failing to adjust at halftime and now by failing to hold the team together. Frazier has to learn to say “no comment” if the Vikings are going to continue to believe in the overall program and know they are playing for a coach who is safe.