In the wake of the worst season in team history, the Minnesota Vikings' first major off-season move was to promote to general manager one of the architects of that disaster. That decision came despite the availability of such experienced NFL veterans as Bill Polian and Jeff Fisher, among dozens of other equally competent talent evaluators.
The decision to pass on Polian seemed logical in that Polian had had a particularly poor run in the draft in recent years and the Colts' fortunes appeared to be predicated entirely on the health and fitness of star quarterback Peyton Manning. The Vikings not only passed on Polian, however, they did not even bother to interview him before making the decision to promote Spielman. That decision already appears not to be paying dividends.
Today, in his first major pronouncement as team general manager, Spielman announced that the Vikings will be reworking their defensive coaching staff and noted that the team had already scheduled an interview with former Tampa Bay head coach Raheem Morris to fill a position currently held by Fred Pagac. The move, of course, is yet another example of the utter cluelessness of this organization.
In 2011, the Vikings were the victims of mistakes in all phases of the game. Chief among the issues, however, was the team's porous defense. Were it possible to inflame the dire defensive predicament, Morris would be just the candidate to do so as he presided over the only defense that in 2011 surrendered more points than did the Vikings' defense.
Notwithstanding the fact that the team has yet to remove Pagac from the role of defensive coordinator or the fact that Morris guided the absolute worst defense in the NFL in 2011, there is the matter that only the Vikings seem to consider Morris in anywhere near as high of a regard. At the same time that Vikings are preparing to interview Morris for the defensive coordinator position, a Washington organization that routinely overvalues the ability of its personnel was interviewing Morris for the position of defensive backs coach. That should be a red flag for Minnesota. Probably, however, it will not be.
The suspicion is that Vikings' head coach Leslie Frazier, apparently intent on continuing his string of suspect decision-making, favors Morris because Morris is wedded to the Tampa 2 coverage scheme that the Vikings so unflinchingly have failed to execute under Frazier. That suggests more of the same awful defense in 2012 and, unfortunately, a strong possibility that the Vikings are considering using their first round pick on a cornerback, rather than on an offensive lineman.
In Minnesota, the more things stay the same, the worse they get.
Up Next: Why Cornerback and Wide-Receiver Generally Are Wrong-Headed Picks Atop the Draft Board.