I’m beginning to believe Leslie Frazier isn’t all that enamored with most of the guys lining up on the defensive line for the Vikings. And what gave me that impression? The fact that Frazier has once again called out the defensive line for not making plays.
In his Wednesday presser Frazier specifically addressed the D-line, which outside of Jared Allen has not been getting it done with the kind of consistency we expected. Frazier said the line needs to “take advantage” of one-on-one situations, adding “We need other players [besides Jared Allen] to make plays.”
The last time Frazier was this miffed with the D-line was after the Bears game, when he attacked both his defensive front and his offensive line for not being physical enough. That approach caused consternation among Viking veterans, especially Kevin Williams who lashed out at his coach for criticizing guys in the media without being man enough to name names.
It’s interesting that Frazier would single out his D-line for criticism in the wake of the Packer game, given that for the first half at least the front four actually played pretty well. The secondary is clearly in much worse shape, but maybe Frazier figures his secondary is such a lost cause that there’s no use even ripping those guys anymore. Unlike the secondary, the defensive line actually has talent, which in Frazier’s eyes may make it all the more frustrating that they’re not getting the job done.
We’ll see if Frazier’s latest attempt at motivation by public tweaking results in a better effort. The front four will certainly need to be on their game Sunday against the Raiders to keep that Oakland rushing attack from slicing and dicing the defense. The less often Raiders ball carriers make it to the second and third level, the better for the Vikings.