Monday, September 23, 2013
No changes for now, Frazier says
By Ben Goessling
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- When the Vikings lost four of five games in the middle of last season, dropping from 5-2 to 6-6, coach Leslie Frazier won praise for his steady hand that eventually helped the team win its last four games and reach the playoffs. So it's possible Frazier's patience after a three-game losing streak this season will pay off, too.
The difference this year is that the losing streak came at the beginning of the season, with the Vikings off to an 0-3 start and facing all kind of ominous statistics about what that means for their playoff chances. Against that backdrop, Frazier saying he doesn't plan any major changes this week probably doesn't sit well with fans. But in Frazier's world, major changes will always have to clear a high threshold.
"I don't know if change for the sake of change is the right thing to do, from my perspective," he said Monday. "You've got to be able to stand in front of the guys in the locker room and talk to them about why you're making the change. Then it's got to be something you feel like is going to help your football team be successful. So change for change's sake -- I don't totally buy into that."
Frazier said on SundayChristian Ponder was still the Vikings' starting quarterback, adding he didn't see anticipate seeing anything on film that would make him change his mind and install Matt Cassel as the starter. On Monday morning, he hadn't even weighed the possibility of swapping starters enough to consider whether changes would be tougher to pull off during a week where the Vikings are traveling to London.
"He made some plays for us yesterday that we needed. There were some other plays that we needed to make that we didn't always get," Frazier said. "But he'll have to keep growing and keep developing. We're doing enough things that are not right across the board that are affecting our won-loss record, and it's not just the quarterback position. He has to play better, but so do some other groups on our football team. I don't think where we are is necessarily purely because of Christian Ponder."