Friday, August 18, 2017

Reports are starting to surface that the Vikings have, as expected, officially parted ways with defensive line coach Karl Dunbar.

Some may find it funny that Dunbar, a fairly longstanding and respected member of the coaching staff, is being fired after one of his key players nearly broke the single season sack record.

The problem Leslie Frazier has with Dunbar may never be made public, but there are a few things to point towards when wondering why this has happened.

First, in May, Dunbar was charged with sexual assault and he received a restraining order as a result of the woman’s complaints.  That type of thing will never sit well with an organization trying to maintain a positive public image.

Secondly, I found it interesting that Jared Allen recently came out and enthusiastically defended defensive coordinator Fred Pagac but never said a word (that I heard or read, anyways) about what a great job Dunbar, his position coach, had been doing.  Allen is seemingly willing to fight tooth and nail for Pagac, which makes his silence on Dunbar even more telling.

Dunbar is likely the first of multiple coaching changes to be made on defense.

Pagac may or may not stay in his current role and may even be bound to leave the team all together.  We already passed along the fact that the Vikings are talking to Raheem Morris about a role on the defense.

Another interesting thing to throw into all of that, Larry Fitzgerald Sr. is a fairly connected guy within the Minnesota sports community, and he is under the impression that Mike Singletary will be the next defensive coordinator of your Minnesota Vikings.

One month ago today, I discussed the impact that decisions from junior quarterbacks could have on the Vikings 2012 Draft, even though they are unlikely to be seeking one of them for themselves.

Yesterday, Landry Jones announced he will remain at Oklahoma for his senior season, which could impact the trade value the Vikings have at the #3 spot.

The first round quarterback prospects are expected to consist of Andrew Luck of Stanford and Robert Griffen III of Baylor, with a bit of a drop off to Texas A&M’s Ryan Tannehill who is currently projected as a late first round pick by most draftniks.

Assuming Andrew Luck is drafted first overall as widely anticipated, this could leave all other quarterback needy teams in a position in which they scramble to trade up with either the Rams or the Vikings to select the highly touted Griffen. 

If a team doesn’t trade upwards, they will risk coming away from the first round empty handed at their most important position.

Of course, the Rams themselves could be interested in selecting Griffen since they have a new regime coming in and Sam Bradford’s ridiculous rookie contract is now a thing of the past.

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Brian Robison expressed gratitude when he was the lone Vikings to receive a pre-lockout contract extension that not only gave him a pay bump, but nearly guaranteed him a starting role in the Vikings defense.

That deal was reportedly worth $14.1 million over three years.

The contract included incentives, and according to this report from the Pioneer Press, Robison hit an incentive in 2011 that will increase his 2012 salary from $700,000 to $1.4 million.

The incentives Robison hit were nothing super unattainable as long as he could stay healthy enough to play, which he did.  The report says that the salary bump was triggered Robison’s ability to at least double his sack total from 2010 (he had two in 2010, and eight in 2011) and also play 33% of the defensive snaps.

Robison had his ups and his downs this season, like all the Vikings players, but his contract is nothing the Vikings should be regretting at this point.

Unfortunately for Robison, his first year as a full-time starter will be best remembered for one of the most unsportsmanlike actions ever taken by an NFL player.

A few posts down, I mentioned that Leslie Frazier is confident that his coaching staff will be coaching a squad at the Senior Bowl later in January.

In the comments, some of you had questions I couldn’t answer about how it is determined who gets to coach the game, which is viewed as an added advantage in terms of up-close scouting of a decent number of prospects.

That question appears to have been answered through various tweets by Vikings beat writers.  It sounds like the option is given to teams based on the order of the upcoming NFL Draft, and teams are given the option to send their coaching staff if they like.

So with only two squads to coach, and the Vikings sitting at #3, why is Frazier so confident he’ll be asked to lead one of the teams?

Well, the game is only a couple of weeks away, and both Indianapolis and St. Louis are up in the air in terms of their G.M. and coaching positions, so it seems likely that at least one of those teams will opt out of the chance to coach a squad.

Hope that helps to clarify matters a little bit.

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The results are in for the AP’s All-Pro voting and it should come as no surprise that defensive end Jared Allen is the only representative from Minnesota to make the team.

Allen was a nearly unanimous choice with 49 votes.

The only other Viking to get receive a vote was center John Sullivan.  He received one vote.

The full listing of the voting results can be found by clicking here.

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