Speculation that the Vikings will/should replace current offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave has it an all-time high this week after the Vikings passing game has hit a horrendous skid. Like ProFootballTalk points out GM Rick Spielman hand selected QB Christian Ponder to lead this team so the blame is going to fall on someone else.
PFT suggests that the blame could fall onto Musgrave with head coach Leslie Frazier right behind him on the hot seat. While I find it hard to argue with the logic that the success of the offense does fall on Musgrave it could actually be Frazier that gets terminated.
Spielman was a big part of the hiring process of Musgrave along with Frazier. With ownership buying into the ‘rebuilding’ philosophy of Spielman they could let him bring in his own head coach to further the rebuild and keep his hand-picked offensive coordinator. It is worth noting that Ponder has only known Musgrave in the NFL in what is essentially his first season since last year was a lockout shortened year.
Here is the full article from PFT:
The Vikings have gone all in with quarterback Christian Ponder, the 12th overall pick in the 2011 draft who was hand picked by G.M. Rick Spielman.
So with Ponder throwing for 58 yards and 63 yards in two of the team’s last three games, Ponder won’t be getting the blame for the performance. The guy responsible for getting Ponder to perform to the best of his ability likely will.
With the Vikings a week away from their bye week, it’s easy to speculate that offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave could soon be on his way out.
The Vikings need to do something to correct a two-game slide that transformed an eye-opening 5-2 start into a middle-of-the-pack-and-sinking 5-4. After Sunday’s home game against the surging Lions, the Vikings have a bye before a brutal final stretch that includes four games against the Bears and Packers in the final six, along with trips to St. Louis and Houston.
On Sunday, it was dink, dunk, and dank for the passing game, with Ponder completing 11 of 22 passes for a per-attempt average of 2.9 yards and a Twin Cities-temperature passer rating of 37.3.
This isn’t a report that Musgrave will be fired. Instead, it’s a recognition that, with the bye week looming and a collapse unfolding and the passing game that’s putrid (especially with Adrian Peterson drawing safeties into the box), a decision to keep Musgrave could make it harder for head coach Leslie Frazier to keep his job when the season ends.
Who steps in?
If Musgrave is terminated the Vikings won’t hire anyone from the outside but look to fill the interim position from a current position coach. Current Vikings OL coach Jeff Davidson is the only position coach with any real OC experience. Davidson was the interim OC for the Browns in ’06 when they fired Maurice Carthon. The following year John Fox hired Davidson to be the OC of the Panthers and install a power running game type offense (pre-Cam Newton).
Ironically in both instances he was replaced by current Panthers OC Rob Chudzinski.
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