Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said every situation is different in response to the different outcomes when defensive coordinator George Edwards and former practice squad guard Isame Faciane were both arrested in the past five months on suspicion of drunken driving.
Edwards was arrested in May and pleaded guilty in August to careless driving, the St. Paul Pioneer Press first reported on Tuesday, the first time the incident was unveiled publicly. Faciane was arrested last week during the team’s bye and was released on Tuesday morning.
“Every situation is different and I don’t really care about being consistent. I care about being right,” Zimmer said. “When this happened with George, George was given a lot of things to do, including a huge monetary commitment that he had to make and he fulfilled all his obligations.
“This last situation (with Faciane) I told the players in the meeting the day they left to make sure they stay out of trouble, do the right things. I told them again off the field when they left. I had the coaches text them to make sure to remind them to stay out of trouble and then when this did happen on the very same day he was told to call me twice and did not call me. Every situation is different. I like Isame. If he fulfills his obligations, I’m not opposed to bringing him back as well.”
Edwards was placed on one year of probation beginning Aug. 30 and fined $1,000, attended a Mothers Against Drunk Driving impact panel and received a chemical dependency evaluation the same day, ESPN reported.
“He was significantly disciplined by the Vikings,” the Vikings said in a statement. “George has fulfilled both his legal obligations as well as the additional team-imposed discipline.”
Zimmer said he wasn’t going to discuss the monetary punishment for Edwards, but called it “significant.”
Asked about Faciane on Monday before Edwards’ previous incident was made public, Zimmer talked about representing the team in the right way.
“It’s disappointing and that’s one of the things that I’m trying to get rid of around here,” Zimmer said. “Making sure that our fans are being represented in the right way. It was stupid.”
On Wednesday, when asked about Edwards’ future, Zimmer said he has fulfilled all of his commitments following the defensive coordinator’s arrest.
“If he messes up again, his future will be, you know – but right now he has fulfilled all his commitments,” Zimmer said.