Frazier's ‘rage' only shows in play-calling

49ers head coach Mike Singletary has become famous for his intensity on the field, but he pointed out to Minnesota reporters that the normally mild-mannered Leslie Frazier can become a "madman" on occasion. Frazier, the Vikings defensive coordinator, responded (in a mild manner) on Thursday.

Apparently Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier has been snowing local reporters for more than two years. Or else his friend of almost 30 years.

Frazier presents himself professionally with a calm demeanor and talks about the similarities between himself and his close friend Tony Dungy, who is also known for his mild mannerisms.

San Francisco 49ers head coach Mike Singletary insists that Frazier has another side. As rookie roommates with the Chicago Bear in 1981, Singletary is in a unique position to offer that statement.

"Leslie can fool you. He seems to be a quiet guy, really calm and reserved, but inside of him is a rage. Inside of him is a madman. He doesn't let it come out too often, (but) it's in there. He does a great job covering it up," Singletary said.

Frazier smiled broadly on Thursday when asked about Singletary's comments.

"You know, I have no idea what he's talking about, and when we do talk I'll be sure to ask him that question," Frazier said. "It's a great relationship. Unfortunately, this week we haven't had a chance to conversate because of the circumstances, but I look forward to talking with him when our game is done."

For the record, Vikings coach Brad Childress told reporters on Thursday that they should believe what they see, not what Singletary said.

Singletary has maintained some of the emotion that carried him to a Hall of Fame career at middle linebacker with the Chicago Bears. In that 1985 season, which some cite as the best team ever in the NFL, Singletary was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year, running back Walter Payton won the NFC Offensive Player of the Year and head coach Mike Ditka was named NFL Coach of the Year.

The Bears outscored their opponents 91-10 in the postseason, and Singletary says Frazier's play on the field didn't often show his madman side, but once in a while he provided an emotional statement.

"Every now and then someone would do something to him and he would come back to the huddle and say, ‘Mike, they have no idea who they are dealing with,' so I would know that they were in trouble when they did that," Singletary said.

Frazier said his wife Gale saw that quote and accused him of still using that line.

To this day, however, Singletary and Frazier remain friends that usually talk at least once a week because of common traits off the field.

"Common faith. We love the Lord; that's number one," Singletary said. "I think we love our families and we love our wives. We are committed to our kids and being good fathers and good husbands and we love football. When you put those things together, it's not very often that you find people that have convictions about their faith and convictions about their family and the way they live their lives. I think that is one of the big reasons why Leslie and I have remained friends and remain consistent in our beliefs and convictions."

Frazier acknowledged that he and Singletary do have a lot in common.

"Our passion for the game, our desire to win and to excel is very, very similar," Frazier said. "… We have a lot more in common than people on the exterior would expect. The guys that have played with us and the guys that know us intimately, they know the similarities. You guys (reporters) don't get a chance to see me in adverse situations very often, but our players do on the defensive side. The way I go about getting their attention is a little bit different than most, but it's effective."

Frazier was asked if he pulls down his pants at halftime, an infamous motivational ploy used by Singletary last year. Frazier laughed at the question.

"No, I'll leave that one to my friend in San Francisco," he said.

The madman part of Frazier comes out the most in his play-calling, according to Singletary. That might come from another noted madman, former Bears defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan, who made the 46 defense famous during the days of Singletary, Frazier, Richard Dent and other stars.

"What's really interesting about Leslie when I look at his defense, it's that side of Leslie that you don't really see a lot of. In particular when he's calling plays, but Leslie has always had an aggressive mindset in terms of, ‘Let's not let the guys sit back there and pick us apart, but let's see what he's made of.' I am not surprised at all that he does that," Singletary said.

Likewise, Singletary said Ryan had a "gunslinger attitude" and knew how to motivate people.

Fans might never see Ryan's outward characteristics in Frazier – they'd be more likely to associate that with Singletary – but Frazier could become more of a focal point in the league soon, as he has also had his chances to interview for head-coaching opportunities around the NFL in the past two years. Eventually, he could reach that goal, but don't expect a big outward show of emotions. He's likely to save the aggressiveness for his play-calling.


The Vikings are still atop the power rankings from's Adam Caplan. The Colts and Giants are making their moves closer to the top spot. Here are those power rankings.

WR Percy Harvin is also among the top five in's rookie rankings by Chris Steuber. Steuber cites Harvin's explosiveness. Here are those rookie rankings.

Harvin is up for the rookie of the week award for the second consecutive week at, where fans can vote.


  • For the Vikings, LB E.J. Henderson (shoulder) was limited Thursday after not participating on Wednesday. His brother, LB Erin Henderson (calf), didn't practice once again.. Vikings injuries: RB Adrian Peterson (back) and S Madieu Williams (shoulder) were limited. WR Percy Harvin was absent with illness.

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