Minnesota Vikings special teams coordinator Mike Priefer will return to work Monday after completing sensitivity training during his two-week suspension.
The team suspended him for three weeks, a term that could be reduced to two weeks with his participation in sensitivity training, following an investigation into an anti-gay comment he made in the presence of former punter Chris Kluwe.
“The decision by Vikings ownership follows extensive conversations with the independent professional consultants retained to conduct individualized anti-harassment, diversity and sexual orientation training with Coach Priefer,” the Vikings said in a statement. “Those consultants have conveyed to the team that Coach Priefer was fully and thoughtfully engaged throughout the process and successfully completed the program.”
The Vikings had several special teams breakdowns in their 30-7 loss to the New England Patriots on Sunday, including a blocked field goal that was returned for a touchdown and not enough players on the field during a punt.
“(Priefer) is one of the best special teams coaches in the NFL so definitely there’s going to be a difference,” kicker Blair Walsh said. “We had the right personnel here and our assistant coach did a good enough job to keep our game plans the same. Joe has enough credit to his name that he should do a good job as well. What happened today was not good. Not good for our unit and not good for us in general.”
During Priefer’s absence, longtime NFL special teams coordinator Joe Marciano was hired as a consultant to take over for Priefer on a temporary basis.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of 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.
Vikings reinstate Priefer after suspension
Viking Update Top Stories
Defenders think facing A.P. will be ‘fun’The Minnesota Vikings will get their first chance to see what it’s like to try to tackle Adrian Peterson in Week 1. What’s the vibe from his former teammates on defense?
Viking UpdateYesterday at 2:53 PM
VIDEO: Spielman on the Mixon decisionMinnesota Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman discusses character red flags and the video that surfaced of Joe Mixon punching a woman.
Viking UpdateYesterday at 12:29 PM
VIDEO: Murray on his ankle, expected returnVIDEO: Minnesota Vikings RB Latavius Murray on his ankle, expected return
Viking UpdateYesterday at 11:14 AM
Welcome home or good riddance?In an ironic twist, Adrian Peterson's first game of his post-Vikings career will come at U.S. Bank Stadium. How are fans going to respond?
Viking UpdateYesterday at 8:37 AM
3-for-1 NFL draft-week specialBuy one month of VikingUpdate.com and get the next two months free.
Viking UpdateYesterday at 4:59 AM