Frazier: Defense Heading In The Right Direction

Posted by Mike Wobschall on May 26, 2010 – 3:09 pm

A strength of the Vikings in recent seasons has been the defense. Under assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, the Vikings defense climbed from 20th in the NFL in 2007 to 6th in both 2008 and 2009. Also, the Vikings ranked #1 against the run for 3 consecutive years from 2006-2008 and finished the 2009 season as the 2nd best team against the run.

But recent success isn’t going to lull the Vikings defense to sleep this offseason. Many veteran starters have been in attendance of the Vikings offseason program and many of them have also participated in OTAs this offseason. Also, Frazier and his defensive staff are working with a big group of rookies – including 2nd round pick CB Chris Cook and 4th round selection DE Everson Griffen – to try and get them up to speed on the scheme.

“I think we’re making some progress,” Frazier told me after OTA #7 on Wednesday. “We’re introducing the young guys to our defense and getting the veteran guys back into the swing of things from a football standpoint. So we’re heading in the right direction.”

During practice on Wednesday a few Vikings defenders got their hands on the football and headed to the endzone. Cook intercepted a pass during a 1-on-1 drill and sprinted toward the goal line, LB Erin Henderson snared an INT during 7-on-7 activities and S Tyrell Johnson scooped up an incomplete pass and sprinted toward the end zone. The practice of picking any loose ball up – from an incompletion to a fumble to an INT – is not something new, but it’s something that Frazier and his staff preach to their players.

“It’s something we’re really emphasizing in these OTAs and we’ll do the same thing in training camp,” Frazier explained. “We’re trying to get more turnovers going forward and to see our guys begin to do that, yeah, it’s really encouraging.”

Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 8 Comments »

8 Responses to “Frazier: Defense Heading In The Right Direction”

  1. By Lito on May 26, 2010 | Reply

    Proud of the Vikings defense and especially with the Williams “Wall” up again. Since Pat and Kevin will be playing this season, does it mean there is no more hope for Haynesworth? If not, how about a mammoth right offensive guard? Do you think DeGeare will be ready to play at a high level?

  2. By mike on May 26, 2010 | Reply

    i like the pick of chris cook over a second rate offensive player and most of the best cb’s were already gone.i would have liked to see javid best at the 30 spot but losing ced griffin was big and we need smart active phsical corners so cook and lito shepard should do well ! im interested in how winfield and ej henderson will be when the season kicks off .

  3. By FAVRE4EVER on May 26, 2010 | Reply

    Really think shepard will bring a veteran spark to the d,my question is still the second back behind peterson. I know they want to see toby come along, but with Favre coming back and he will be back i really would like to see them look at an experienced back. Westbrook is still unsigned, but i see Pierre Thomas is still available. Can you imagine a peterson/ thomas one two punch! Don’t know who’s running the show, but if this is the year make a move for Thomas.

  4. By PurplePeopleEater on May 27, 2010 | Reply

    Peterson is the experienced back now. He’ll be more of an every down back this year with the rookie coming in when AP needs a breather. Peterson is a class act and hard worker all the way, he will command respect from every defense. And, with him transforming more into an every down back, it won’t be nearly as obvious this year when we call a pass play. I would like to see some options at the line of scrimmage, having a pass play and run play called at the same time, while Brett reads the defense and signals for the play that has the better chance of success. With his intelligence and all the vets we have on offense, there’s no way a defense could hold them back.

  5. By JOSH on May 27, 2010 | Reply


  6. By vikelifer on May 27, 2010 | Reply

    go vikings on to victory,Brett will be back,so step up to the plate,O-line you better do your job this year not like last year when you blew the end of the season and the championship game.This year it better be SuperBowl Champion Minnesota Vikings.

  7. By Pat the Viking on May 28, 2010 | Reply

    It’s great to be able to create Turnovers and get touchdowns off of your opponents mistakes. It also takes away their’s CONFIDENCE .

    The GAME last year against the 49ers – The 49ers came to Minnesota and play against us with great confidence ( NOT that they could just beat us ) But with the Confidence that they was the best team in the NFL. After that game against us, they lost that confidence over the next few games and never recover the confidence level team wise.

  8. By MGR4FUN on May 28, 2010 | Reply

    defensively we added depth / experience / youth / speed & size ya just cant ask for more than that … excellent coachin and excellent execution of the defensive scheme is the name of the game … a defense that can get off the field … create an ocassional turnover and actually put some points on the board from time to time … that is the best description of the minnesota defense that i can think of … for years no one has stopped the run as well as the purple hav … and that means your pass defense is gonna get tested and with that much action they hav improved every year … it all starts with “The A.W.W.E.some4some” the purple backers are the most underrated in the NFL and i now believe with the new additions of shepperd and cross and the additional experience gained by the 2nd year guys and the veteran db’s gettin healthier the purple d is ready for a gr8 season this fall

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