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  1. #1
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Inside Slant - USA Today

    Here is the latest inside slant on the whole team from USA Today.

    USA Today

    Inside Slant
    Posted 1/5/2006 4:06 AM


    With eight head coaching openings around the NFL as of Wednesday, the
    Vikings' priorities appear to have changed in their search to fill two
    key roles.

    At a Monday news conference, owner Zygi Wilf indicated the team wanted
    to hire a personnel chief and then look for a replacement for fired
    coach Mike Tice.

    But after suffering a setback in the quest to fill the personnel opening
    - and with so many teams looking for a coach - the focus had shifted by
    Tuesday. The setback occurred when Eagles vice president of player
    personnel Tom Heckert ended up staying in Philadelphia after being given
    the general manager's title.

    Having failed to get their top choice, Wilf and his associates turned
    their attention to filling the coaching vacancy first. The urgency might
    have been due in part to the fact the Vikings saw Washington's Gregg
    Williams taken off the market so quickly when the Redskins gave their
    assistant head coach/defense huge bucks to stay.

    Eagles offensive coordinator Brad Childress was interviewed on Tuesday
    before heading to Green Bay to talk to the Packers.

    Kansas City assistant head coach/offensive coordinator Al Saunders,
    Vikings defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell and Indianapolis assistant
    head coach/quarterbacks Jim Caldwell were next to be interviewed.

    Saunders was supposed to be in Houston on Thursday; Cottrell and
    Caldwell are not believed to be on any other team's list of head
    coaching candidates.

    Another other potential candidate for the Vikings job could be Iowa
    coach Kirk Ferentz, but it's unclear if he will be interviewed or has a
    desire to leave the Hawkeyes program.

    The process is being led by Wilf, his brother and team president Mark
    Wilf, as well as vice president of football operations Rob Brzezinski
    and vice president of operations and legal counsel Kevin Warren.

    While the Vikings would like to get a head coach hired as soon as
    possible but appear committed to doing a thorough search, it's not clear
    when the personnel chief will be named. That person will work with
    Brzezinski, a salary-cap specialist, and will have a say on both pro and
    college matters.

    So far, Vikings director of college scouting Scott Studwell and
    coordinator of pro personnel Jeff Robinson have interviewed for that job.

    NOTES, QUOTES

    —Within hours of being fired as the Vikings coach, Mike Tice received an
    offer from his former defensive coordinator, George O'Leary, to join the
    staff at Central Florida. Tice declined.

    —In addition to playing NFC North opponents Chicago, Green Bay and
    Detroit home and away, the Vikings schedule looks like this: home games
    against Arizona, St. Louis, New England, the Jets and Carolina, road
    game at San Francisco, Seattle, Buffalo, Miami and Washington.

    —Jermaine Wiggins became the second tight end to lead the Vikings in
    receptions in two consecutive seasons. He had 69 this year. Steve Jordan
    was the other tight end to accomplish the feat, doing it in 1985-86.

    —Third-string quarterback Shaun Hill, who signed with the Vikings as a
    rookie free agent in 2002, saw his first NFL action in Sunday's victory
    over Chicago, kneeling twice at the end of the game.

    —Paul Edinger's 54-yard field goal in the second quarter Sunday was his
    third field goal of more than 50 yards this season, trying a team record
    held by Jan Stenerud and Fuad Reveiz.

    —Brad Johnson had four interceptions in 294 attempts this season, the
    fewest interceptions among quarterbacks who had more than 224 attempts
    in the NFL this season. His interception percentage also was the lowest
    in team history.

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "It comes down to the coordinators. What kind of scheme
    they want to play, how they're going to use us. So I'll be spending most
    of my time with the defensive coordinator, so it really doesn't matter
    who the head coach is." - Cornerback Antoine Winfield, when asked about
    his next head coach.

    STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

    The Vikings spent the week talking to coaching candidates after firing
    Mike Tice following Sunday's victory over the Chicago Bears.

    Philadelphia offensive coordinator Brad Childress, Kansas City assistant
    head coach/offensive coordinator Al Saunders, Vikings defensive
    coordinator Ted Cottrell and Indianapolis assistant head
    coach/quarterbacks Jim Caldwell all have been interviewed by Minnesota
    executives.

    Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz is a possibility to join the mix. The Vikings
    were hoping to lure Washington assistant head coach/defense Gregg
    Williams, but that ended when the Redskins gave him a three-year, $8
    million deal.

    COACHING CAROUSEL: Tice's assistants remain under contract until Jan. 31
    and have been asked to do player evaluations. The team, however, is
    giving permission to any team that wants to talk to one of Tice's former
    assistants.

    The Arizona Cardinals will talk to Steve Loney about becoming their
    offensive line coach. Loney spent this past season as the Vikings'
    offensive coordinator and line coach. Wide receivers coach Wes Chandler
    might be headed to Baltimore.

    FREE AGENT UPDATE

    —RB Michael Bennett (almost certain to be playing elsewhere next season).

    —CB Ralph Brown (nickel and dime back for much of the season, he was
    demoted late in the year and might be allowed to walk).

    —SS Corey Chavous (unhappy with his contract, there is little question
    he will look elsewhere).

    —LB Sam Cowart (veteran provided stability in the middle and likely will
    return).

    —K Paul Edinger (struggled from between 30-to-39 yards but was solid
    enough to return).

    —G Toniu Fonoti (Vikings like his potential but questions about his
    weight could cause his exit).

    —C Melvin Fowler (desire to start could mean he'll go elsewhere).

    —QB Shaun Hill (third-stringer likely to be let go).

    —DE Lance Johnstone (pass-rush specialist might get more attractive
    offer elsewhere).

    —LB Keith Newman (proved self as starter and will want some guarantees
    he stays in that role).

    —S Willie Offord (injured most of season, might return at reduced price).

    —WR Koren Robinson (Vikings reportedly have right to match any offer).

    —LB Raonall Smith (special teams ace might sign elsewhere if it means
    more playing time).

    —CB Brian Williams (unhappy with being demoted after Fred Smoot was
    signed, he will be looking for a starting job in another city).

    —RB Moe Williams (knee injury landed him on IR and likely ended his career).

    —C Cory Withrow (backup could find self in old role behind Matt Birk in
    2006).

    FEELING A DRAFT: The Vikings, who finished tied with Dallas, Miami and
    San Diego at 9-7, will select 17th in the draft on April 29. Minnesota
    likely will be looking for help at running back, on the offensive line
    and linebacker.

    With Michael Bennett almost certain to leave as a free agent, Onterrio
    Smith's future uncertain after a one-year suspension and Mewelde Moore's
    health always an issue, the first pick could be used on a running back.

    Assuming Matt Birk returns after missing the season because of injury,
    the Vikings should open the 2006 season with a line that includes Birk
    at center, Bryant McKinnie at left tackle and Marcus Johnson at right
    tackle. Anthony Herrera finished the season at left guard and could stay
    at that spot, but the Vikings also could look to upgrade at the guard spots.

    Veteran middle linebacker Sam Cowart will be a free agent, and the
    Vikings need to find an eventual replacement for him even if he returns.

    MEDICAL WATCH: Rookie P Chris Kluwe will undergo reconstructive surgery
    later this month to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his
    right (punting) knee suffered Dec. 4 in Detroit. Kluwe, who missed only
    one game because of the injury, is confident he will be ready for
    training camp.

    QB Daunte Culpepper continues to rehabilitate his surgically repaired
    right knee at his home in Orlando, Fla. "He's continuing to progress
    right on schedule with things," said Vikings athletic trainer Chuck
    Barta, who recently visited Culpepper. "He's gotten past a couple of
    hurdles, but it's not around the corner yet. It's going to continue to
    be kind of week by week and see where he's at. But he's doing well."

    Barta said the plan is to have Culpepper ready by training camp,
    although that might be optimistic considering he tore the anterior
    cruciate, medial collateral and posterior cruciate ligaments in his knee
    on Oct. 30 at Carolina.

    As for other players who finished the season on injured reserve:

    —C Matt Birk, who underwent surgery to repair the torn labrum in his
    left hip in September, continues to rehab.

    —Rookie S Dustin Fox, who was placed on IR during training camp because
    of a broken arm, has recovered.

    —S Willie Offord (knee), CB Laroni Gallishaw (sprained right ankle), DE
    Kenechi Udeze (knee) and G Toniu Fonoti (groin) also are doing well,
    according to Barta. Udeze will begin having what Barta calls
    "impact-type activity," such as on-the-field running, at the end of this
    month. "The impact is going to be a big test for him and how he reacts
    to it," Barta said. Both Offord and Fonoti will become unrestricted free
    agents in March.
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  2. #2
    DCPologirl is offline Team Alumni
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    Great article thank you

    DCPologirl:Maybe Randy will make Aaron Brooks look better......roflmao Del Rio: I guarantee he will

  3. #3
    jimmymac's Avatar
    jimmymac is offline Pro-Bowler
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    Wow, that's a lot of info in one place. Good find.
    -- Sarcasm always turned on --

  4. #4
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "It comes down to the coordinators. What kind of scheme
    they want to play, how they're going to use us. So I'll be spending most
    of my time with the defensive coordinator, so it really doesn't matter
    who the head coach is." - Cornerback Antoine Winfield, when asked about
    his next head coach.

    Which is why Tice never had a chance...his coordinators (especially Loney) SUCKED!!! F'n tighwad Red!!!
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

  5. #5
    Prophet Guest

    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    "cajunvike" wrote:
    QUOTE TO NOTE: "It comes down to the coordinators. What kind of scheme
    they want to play, how they're going to use us. So I'll be spending most
    of my time with the defensive coordinator, so it really doesn't matter
    who the head coach is." - Cornerback Antoine Winfield, when asked about
    his next head coach.

    Which is why Tice never had a chance...his coordinators (especially Loney) SUCKED!!! F'n tighwad Red!!!
    The way I interpret this is that Tice wasn't doing his job. He was HC and should be overseeing the team and making sure everything is running smoothly. Either Winfield didn't understand that Tice was discussing things with Cotrell or Tice wasn't discussing things with Cotrell enough. It may be that Winfield has no clue or it may be that Tice had no clue or it may be that Cottrell had no clue or it may be that I have no clue. Anyway you look at it, there is a lot of cluelessness going on here.

  6. #6
    DogPound's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    Nice find Fed! thats a great thread to read ....Back to the comments on Tice....I would have to say that anytime your Head Coach has to bring in other personel to help over see the coaching ( Rome and Fazio ) thats not a good sign that your HC knows what he's doing. I liked Tice in many areas but I think he lacked some major important attributes that a coach needs to succeed and get respect . Just my opinion!
    ~ I BLEED PURPLE!! ~

  7. #7
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    "DogPound" wrote:
    Nice find Fed! thats a great thread to read ....Back to the comments on Tice....I would have to say that anytime your Head Coach has to bring in other personel to help over see the coaching ( Rome and Fazio ) thats not a good sign that your HC knows what he's doing. I liked Tice in many areas but I think he lacked some major important attributes that a coach needs to succeed and get respect . Just my opinion!


    True, but even Tice was the first to admit he had a lot to learn. If he had been given the people he needed under him, instead of Red being so cheap about it, he could have, and would have, done a lot better.
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  8. #8
    V4L's Avatar
    V4L
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    —Third-string quarterback Shaun Hill, who signed with the Vikings as a
    rookie free agent in 2002, saw his first NFL action in Sunday's victory
    over Chicago, kneeling twice at the end of the game.



    ATTA BOY SHAUNNY!!

  9. #9
    vikes4lyfe's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    LMAO,

  10. #10
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant - USA Today

    "Prophet" wrote:
    "cajunvike" wrote:
    QUOTE TO NOTE: "It comes down to the coordinators. What kind of scheme
    they want to play, how they're going to use us. So I'll be spending most
    of my time with the defensive coordinator, so it really doesn't matter
    who the head coach is." - Cornerback Antoine Winfield, when asked about
    his next head coach.

    Which is why Tice never had a chance...his coordinators (especially Loney) SUCKED!!! F'n tighwad Red!!!
    The way I interpret this is that Tice wasn't doing his job. He was HC and should be overseeing the team and making sure everything is running smoothly. Either Winfield didn't understand that Tice was discussing things with Cotrell or Tice wasn't discussing things with Cotrell enough. It may be that Winfield has no clue or it may be that Tice had no clue or it may be that Cottrell had no clue or it may be that I have no clue. Anyway you look at it, there is a lot of cluelessness going on here.
    Part of being HC is delegating to your staff so that you can concentrate on big picture issues...he had to run around putting out fires all season...and that is because Red wouldn't pay for better assistants...given better coaching personnel, Tice would have had more time to be a real leader. Notice that when Tice stepped in and took over when both the offense and the defense were struggling, those respective units turned things around...he should have never had to do this...and if he would have had more money to hire better coaching talent, he would have done much better. He will show this in his next HC position...it may take a couple of years, but he will be a HC again...and he will surprise many people.
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

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