Frazier recounts trying season

As a guest on PFT Live, Leslie Frazier talked about dealing with the collapse of the Metrodome roof, reiterated his stance on Brett Favre and talked about the advantages of an enclosed stadium.

Over the past few years, the website ProFootballTalk.com went from being a website to check out for football news into a real power player in the news and views of the NFL. Recently absorbed into the NBC/Universal global media giant, PFT has become a "legitimate media" outlet that it loved to poke of in the recent past. On Tuesday, in the latest foothold in the business of the NFL, the website launched a daily production of ProFootballTalk Live – a daily webcast dealing with NFL issues and brought to you by the good people at Blue Moon Beer.

The first guest on PTW Live was new Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier. After being told by host Mike Florio that he would be the answer to many trivia questions – the silence that followed made one wonder if Frazier liked being called a multi-trivia answer – Frazier said that his six-game apprenticeship by fire after the Metrodome collapse was one of the most demanding ordeals any coach or team has had to deal with.

"I had a phone call from Tony Dungy during that process and he said, ‘Leslie, you have experienced things that I, in my 30 years of coaching, never even would have dreamt would have happened,'" Frazier said. "He applauded the way we handled certain things. It was some very unusual circumstances. But, the good thing (is) our guys really stuck together, doing some things that I don't think anybody could have predicted. They continued to fight as hard as they could and we came away with some wins, but it was different. We had to constantly adjust for things that were unforeseen. But the guys got through it though."

The topic of conversation, which it always does, turned quickly to Brett Favre. Frazier said he doesn't foresee Brett "getting the itch" to return next August and said that, unlike his predecessor, he is planning to move on in the interim. While he wouldn't commit to rookie Joe Webb as his starter moving forward despite playing pretty well in most of his three games. He said that quarterback is the most important position to have stability at on the team and that the Vikings will explore options that don't include a Favre return.

"In Brett's case, in my conversations with him, I don't see any desire or any situation that would bring him back to pro football. I know for us, Minnesota, it's time for us to solidify that position and I just don't see Brett having the desire to come back and want to play and we need to find the right guy for the future."

As for the Vikings stadium issue, while Zygi Wilf hopes to have an outdoor stadium, Frazier is a proponent of the advantage the Vikings have enjoyed in the Metrodome. He said it's the loudest stadium in the league and that it can give opponents fits when the Vikings are hitting on all cylinders.

"When it's going, there's no greater place to be a home team than here in Minnesota," Frazier said. "It's a special place."

Frazier said he felt honored to be the first guest on PFT Live and hopes to be a regular guest as the months and years unfold down the line. To hear the confidence with which he spoke about his place in the organization, it's becoming clearer all the time that the Wilfs made the right decision in signing Frazier.

WEDNESDAY NOTES

  • Vikings running back Lorenzo Booker and the rest of the players in the fledgling UFL are still waiting for their final paychecks from the league. The checks were delayed when the season ended in November and players were told they would have them by Christmas. That came and went and now players are being told the check isn't even in the mail yet – payment is being rumored to be coming sometime in the next couple of weeks, but no guarantees are being made.

  • The latest TV ratings cycle ended Dec. 31 and the top-rated show on the four networks wasn't a reality show, a sitcom or a cop drama. It was "Sunday Night Football" on NBC, giving the network its first highest-rated show in five years.

  • While Favre has yet to publicly respond to the latest allegations made by a pair of Jets massage therapists, the team, which was named in the lawsuit filed earlier this week, released a statement saying the case is "completely without merit" and that the team is looking forward to "defending the matter in court, where we are confident that the Jets will prevail." As Viking Update pointed out yesterday, the Jets share the belief that, had the situation been as bad as the suit claims, the pair of therapists would have made their allegations public either during their tenure with the Jets or after they were no longer hired to perform their therapeutic duties. Like Jenn Sterger, both Christina Scavo and Shannon O'Toole waited more than two years to make their charges against Favre.


    John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.

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