Posted November 29, 2011 on AP on Fox
Leslie Frazier has one person on his coaching staff dedicated to watching replays and a couple of others who help out to make sure that he is notified when a call on the field has the potential to be overturned. When that system broke down at a crucial moment during the Minnesota Vikings' latest loss, it prompted Frazier to call for an examination of how the process works - or doesn't - as the frustrations of this lost season continue to mount. On third-and-goal in the fourth quarter of Sunday's loss to Atlanta, the Vikings gave the ball to Percy Harvin. He was stopped near the line of scrimmage by the Falcons defense, which also stuffed Toby Gerhart on fourth-and-goal from the 1 to keep the Vikings from carving into a 10-point deficit. Replays appeared to show Harvin getting the ball across the goal line on his second effort. Frazier said Monday that the coaches who are charged with monitoring replays never brought the possibility of a challenge to his attention, a fact that appeared to give the usually reserved coach quite a bit of pause as the Vikings (2-9) prepare to enter the final portion of his first season on the job. ''We've got to review our communication based on that play alone,'' Frazier said. ''We've really got to review that going forward. Seeing the play and realizing that there was a chance to maybe get a challenge in there is something that we have to re-look at it how we're communicating between myself and the guys upstairs.'' Harvin said after the game that he was lobbying for Frazier to challenge the call in what the receiver called a chaotic environment. The flag was never thrown and Gerhart went nowhere on the fourth-down play called by offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave, preserving Atlanta's lead and sending the Vikings to another loss. Frazier did not identify by name the coaches responsible for helping with the replay reviews, and this one likely would have been a close call. Harvin's initial forward progress was stopped on the play, but his knees never hit the turf and he lunged the ball across the goal line on his second effort. ''When our season is where it is and the way our season has gone, anytime you're in a game like that, a close game, and we've been in a lot of close games this year, one play sometimes or one sequence can turn the game,'' Frazier said. ''We've seen that in our case a number of times when we don't execute correctly from a coaching standpoint, just like our players. It will cost you. We've got to continue to work as a team and as a staff and get those situations correct.'' The latest coaching difficulties turned up the heat on Frazier and his staff as an impatient fan base looks for signs of improvement in what is shaping up as one of the most disappointing seasons in franchise history. ''We're certainly at a frustration level that is pretty out of sight right now,'' linebacker Chad Greenway said. ''All you can do at this point at 2-9 is come in each week and try to improve, play better within the scheme and just make the plays that are there.'' Defensive coordinator Fred Pagac is leading a unit that is ranked 19th in the league and has struggled to force turnovers and deliver impact plays. Musgrave has been up and down with the 30th-ranked offense, helping rookie quarterback Christian Ponder get acclimated to the NFL, but also calling some head-scratching plays that have stunted drives in key situations. Frazier defended the run call on Sunday, saying it was the execution that was lacking. ''It's an ongoing process as you evaluate what you're doing offensively, defensively, special teams-wise based on the personnel that you have,'' Frazier said. ''You have to as a coach try to figure out a way to adjust to your personnel.'' The cold, hard reality is sinking in. This season is over and the focus has turned to the future, and players and coaches alike know that jobs are on the line going forward, starting with Sunday's home game against Denver. ''In a lot of cases you're playing for your job for next year and what you can bring to the team,'' Greenway said. ''In a lot of cases, if you're a young guy and this is your opportunity, this is your chance to step up and shine and make some plays to give yourself a position on this team next year.'' Notes: The Vikings signed TE Mickey Shuler to the practice squad. Shuler was drafted a seventh-round draft choice in 2010 who was claimed off waivers by the Miami Dolphins that year. Shuler played in six games last year for the Dolphins but has not played in a game this season.

Frazier takes blame for failed fourth down

Leslie Frazier took the blame for being too aggressive, but a fourth-down play wasn’t blocked up right, either, and the failure to challenge the previous play may have been just as costly. Either way, the Vikings didn’t get it right on the biggest play of the game.

Frazier upset for not challenging goal line play

By JON KRAWCZYNSKI AP Sports Writer EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) -- Leslie Frazier has one person on his coaching staff dedicated to watching replays and a couple of others who help out to make sure that he is notified when a call on the field has the potential to be overturned. When that system broke down at a crucial moment during the Minnesota Vikings' latest loss, it prompted...

Injuries mount; Frazier admits mistake in not throwing challenge flag

Coach Leslie Frazier admitted there was a mistake in communication on a third-down play late in Sunday's game.

Avoiding Trade Up For Gabbert & Taking Ponder Looks Good So Far

Rewinding the clock to the 2011 NFL Draft the belief was the Vikings would target a quarterback early on who would be “the guy” for the next several years. Leslie Frazier made it no secret he was out to find the next Joe Flacco … [visit site to read more]Avoiding Trade Up For Gabbert & Taking Ponder Looks Good So Far - The Viking Age - The Viking Age - A Minnesota Vikings...

Vikings' Frazier second-guesses himself after fourth-down failure

Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier has some explaining to do after his fourth-and-goal decision.

Leslie Frazier struggles while other new coaches flourish

A look at the eight new NFL head coaches this season ...

Frazier talks about Falcons loss

Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier talks about Sunday’s loss to the Falcons and about the coaching staff's failure to challenge a possible touchdown by Percy Harvin late in the game.

Vikings rally falls short in 24-14 loss to Falcons

Leslie Frazier couldn't blame his players after the Minnesota Vikings' comeback attempt was stopped on a fourth-down play at the Atlanta 1.

Leslie Frazier On Vikings’ Communication Issues, Harvin TD Challenge

The Vikings had a chance to score a TD and get back in the game in the fourth after a long Percy Harvin kickoff return but in the end they failed to punch the ball in from 3 yards out and gave possession back to the Falcons. During that ill-fated series Bill Musgrave called a bootleg for Christian Ponder that ended up in a sack, then two runs for Percy Harvin that both apparently...

Changes expected in Minnesota after the season

There weren’t high expectations for Leslie Frazier’s first season in Minnesota, but the team has still disappointed. They are tied for the second worst record in football at 2-9, and records like that usually bring change. Frazier should be safe, but Tom Pelissero of writes that his defensive staff will likely be tweaked. Frazier has…

Vikings struggle with injuries

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier is "more angry with myself" as the team struggles with injured players.

Vikings RB Peterson "making progress"

Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier says running back Adrian Peterson is "making progress" in his recovery from an ankle injury.Peterson sat out Sunday's 24-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, the first game he has missed all season.Frazier said the team would closely monitor his progress throughout the week before determining his availability for Sunday's showdown...

A day after missed challenge, red flag is raised

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier acknowledged that his staff missed a key opportunity, and sounded the horn for better communication.

Postgame: Ponder, Frazier on Vikes loss

Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder and coach Leslie Frazier break down the team's 24-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.
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