Vikings coach Leslie Frazier attempted to calm the waters Monday after several players publicly criticized play calls in the aftermath of a final-minute loss in Dallas, Chip Scoggins of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
Frazier acknowledged that he intended to discuss those grievances with his players at an afternoon meeting before the team began its crash-course preparation for Thursday’s game against Washington.
Frazier also indicated that he’s not planning any changes to his coaching staff or play-calling responsibilities after the Vikings tied the franchise record for worst start by falling to 1-7 with a 27-23 loss to the Cowboys on Sunday.
“As difficult as the ballgame was for us, those guys will bounce back,” Frazier said. “We have to be able to do that in our profession, whether you win or lose.”
Frustration bubbled over in the postgame locker room as players questioned one offensive play call and the defensive game plan on Dallas’ game-winning 90-yard touchdown drive. Specifically, players questioned offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave’s decision to call a pass on first down after A.J. Jefferson’s interception with 4:29 left in the game.
Several defensive players also were upset that defensive coordinator Alan Williams rushed only three linemen while dropping one into coverage on four of the nine plays on the Cowboys’ final drive.
Frazier said he respects the opinion of his veteran leaders, but he said he prefers that they discuss any issues or concerns with coaches privately.
“I understand the frustration,” Frazier said. “We were all frustrated at the end of that ballgame. But there are so many positive things that occurred before that two-minute drive. But we’ll definitely talk through that situation as a team and just where we are and what we have to do to move forward.”