Continuing the trend of former Minnesota Vikings head coaches making the news recently, we have another one that has surprisingly. . .at least, surprisingly to me. . .gotten an interview for the NFL’s lone remaining head coaching job.
Leslie Frazier, who coached the Vikings from the midway point of the 2010 season to the end of the 2013 season, is one of the candidates for the still-open coaching job with the Indianapolis Colts.
Frazier took over for the Vikings after Brad Childress got fired during the 2010 season. He led the team through a disastrous 2011 campaign that saw the team tie their franchise record for fewest wins in a season, but was also there for the big turnaround that saw the Vikings advance to the 2012 NFC Playoffs. After a 2013 season that saw the Vikings’ defense (which was supposed to be Frazier’s calling card) allow 30 points a game, Zygi Wilf and company gave Frazier the axe and replaced him with Mike Zimmer.
Since departing from Minnesota, Frazier has had three different stops. He was the Defensive Coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for two seasons, and then moved on to be the Secondary Coach for the Baltimore Ravens. Most recently, Frazier was the Defensive Coordinator for the Buffalo Bills, and their defense was not terribly good this past season, to be honest, ranking 18th in points allowed and 26th in yards allowed.
After getting snubbed by Josh McDaniels, the Colts might be looking for a “safe” choice. Frazier, who is about as low-key as it gets, could be considered to be just that. He also has a previous relationship with the Colts, as he served as a defensive assistant for the team for a couple of seasons, including the Colts team that won the Super Bowl in 2006. It was his performance with the Colts that gave him the springboard to be the Vikings’ Defensive Coordinator starting in 2007.
I’m not sure if Leslie Frazier is the favorite to get the job in Indianapolis by any stretch. In fact, he’s probably not. But given the way his tenure in Minnesota ended, it’s a bit of a surprise to see his name come up for a head coaching job, to be honest.