Vikings Breaking New Ground For Minorities

The proposed sale of the Minnesota Vikings to Arizona businessman Reggie Fowler could break the ground for minorities within the National Football League. Well behind the times of equal opportunity, the Fowler-led group comes at the right time, not only for Minnesota but also for the NFL as a whole.

In era where minority candidates are finding their deserved opportunities in management and head coaching positions, the playing field is leveling. The future appears to have a look for equality and fairness amongst a group of wealthy businessmen which make up the ownership groups within the National Football League.

Unlike the minority interviewing policy the league has adopted, for which a team is required to interview a minority candidate for roles within the organization such as a head coach, etc., the Fowler ownership bid to purchase the Minnesota Vikings will be treated as any potential transaction by the league and its owners.

"Today is the beginning of a new era for the Minnesota Vikings, the fans, and the community surrounding the Twin Cities. Mr. Fowler has been diligent in his pursuit of the team, even when it appeared that Red McCombs was again toying with the notion of actually committing to a sale," a team source said. "I commend Mr. Fowler, dealing with McCombs is never easy."

At a time when the Vikings are teetering on the cusp of becoming a very good football team or just another team wallowing within the parity of which the National Football League has become, the proposed sale of the team would be a step in the right direction. This Vikings organization is in dire need of an influx.

Hamstrung under McCombs' budget restraints, Minnesota has relied on a tremendous front office staff to make the Vikings a contender again. In an era when players often are acquired through a bidding war, the Minnesota Vikings quite often bowed out from the process before they were players.

As the Fowler purchase process evolves, the question of whether the Vikings front office will be granted the ability to secure talent within the free agent player market remains unanswered. Skepticism rules in regards to McCombs' position on spending the money necessary early this off-season until a sale could be finalized.

"At this time we have a budget to work with and nothing has changed in regards to our approach to the continued building of the team," the source continued. "We have been instructed to continue on with the daily activities of the organization, which we have and we are in the process of determining players and specific needs to be addressed within the roster and the availability of players to help us."

With initial indications appearing positive regarding the sale and approval, the potential for the Vikings to become an increased presence in free agency is a welcomed sight for front office personnel in Minnesota that has battled the tight restraints placed upon them by McCombs over the years.

"Generally, he (McCombs) would place a limit on what we could do on the number of player contracts. He hasn't been overly restrictive per say in regards to contract dollars and terms that were a fit within the scope of the going rate," the team source said. "But, the number of players or making an offer which would put us in the position to secure talent has been an ongoing issue.

There is a bottom-line revenue percentage he (McCombs) wants to maintain and we have to meet that number. While I can't reveal the exact numbers, they are significant and we could have utilized the resources to improve this team.

There have been whispers around the league and within the Vikings organization that McCombs will put the clamps on spending until the sale passes approval with the league. As the free agent player-signing period commences on March 2nd, the timing and impact could be detrimental for the immediate growth of the Vikings.

"Only time will tell if that will be the case. We have been told it won't be, but we have been told many things over the years here in regards to spending money and obtaining talent. We're optimistic that McCombs will confer with Mr. Fowler and give us the opportunity to do what we believe is best for the Minnesota Vikings football operations, our fans, and community," the team source said.

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