Tice Sees Monday As His Tryout

Monday's game with Baltimore could be Mike Tice's best opportunity to win a head coaching job.

Mike Tice has been rumored as being a head coaching candidate despite never even holding a coordinator's position in his pro coaching career.

His hard-nosed style and ability to get along with players, as well as getting their respect, has made Tice a hot property, with at least a couple of college programs looking for him to lead them.

However, Tice wants one job -- the Vikings' head coaching gig. Monday's game may be his only chance as a head coach to get that opportunity. VU is told Red McCombs thinks a lot of Tice, but, if the Vikings merely get blown out by the Ravens, he will likely go outside the organization to find a head coach. A new man may not like the idea of having Tice waiting in the wings as a ready replacement, so his future could be on the line if a new coach isn't him and wants to clean house.

Look for Tice to try to get a spirited effort out of the Vikings. He's got the incentive. His job could depend on it.

* The Vikings already know they will be the third-seeded team in the newly-formed NFC North next season, but could know where they will draft after today's games.
* FOX Sports is reporting that Tony Dungy has to take the Bucs all the way to the Super Bowl to keep his job. This contradicts what a Bucs source has told VU, which was that the team needs to win at least one playoff game and maybe two. As the last seeded playoff team to get to the Super Bowl, the Bucs would have to win in Philadelphia, in St. Louis and at either Chicago, Green Bay or San Franicisco to make the Super Bowl -- extremely unlikely.
* Cris Carter practiced Saturday and remains probable on the depth chart for Monday despite a broken rib.
* Jim Kleinsasser, Todd Bouman and Ed McDaniel will be among the inactives on Monday -- all three have been ruled out. While Dale Carter took a lot of snaps Saturday, his hamstring will have to improve before he'll be allowed to start Monday.
* Randy Moss has some incentive for Monday. He needs 74 receiving yards to become the first player in NFL history to have 1,300 yards receiving in four straight years. He's currently tied at three with a pair of three-year streaks by Jerry Rice and one by Michael Irvin.
* VU has been told that, barring a head coaching job in the NFL, Dennis Green will receive buyout payments of $2 million in 2002 and 2003, far less than the $6 million he would have made with the team and the $5.4 million many sources were claiming he received as a buyout. The source on this was close to the negotiations and said that, if Green gets another head coaching job that pays $2 million a year or more, the Vikings won't be on the hook for those payments.

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