Sean Jensen has moved on from the St. Paul Pioneer-Press to the Chicago Sun-Times, but clearly, he still has a lot of sources on the Vikings. And what these sources are saying about Brad Childress and the team’s relationship with him can’t be encouraging to Chilly or reassuring to Zygi Wilf.
In his Wednesday piece, Jensen relays some very strong comments from unnamed Vikings players concerning Childress. On the subject of why no players came forward to publicly support Childress even after Sunday’s season-saving win over the Cardinals, one Viking said, “We know that Childress doesn’t have our backs, so why should we have his? We’re playing for us, and we’re winning despite him.”
Another “team source” said of Childress’ notoriously poor handling of personnel, “He has absolutely no people skills.”
Another point of contention between Childress and his players was the way Chilly went after Brett Favre in the wake of Favre’s bad performance against the Packers. One player said he and his teammates reached “a turning point” in their feelings about Chilly after the coach threw Brett under the bus for throwing three picks.
However, the players want to make it clear that they have no intention of quitting on the season, regardless of their animosity toward their alleged leader. “‘We’ve got too many good football players, and we won’t lay down like Dallas,” Jensen quotes one player as saying. And, in the strongest statement of all, another player declared, “‘As much as I hate Childress, I will keep playing.”
Can a team really rally itself all the way to the playoffs by uniting in their hatred of a coach?