Generally speaking, the football-following world does a good job of not over-reacting after the first game of the regular season. Teams that came away with a win in Week 1 aren’t anointed as future Super Bowl champions and teams that came out on the wrong end of a Week 1 decision aren’t completely written off.
But that tends to change after Week 2. In today’s highly-sensationalized sports culture, we like to reach wide-sweeping conclusions on how the rest of the season is likely to play out based on the first two games. So for the Vikings, beginning the season with a 0-2 mark has brought about a fair amount of panic from the fan base and a fair amount of criticism from observers. There’s talk about the infrequency with which teams make the playoffs after starting 0-2, and how many wins the Vikings need by their Week 9 bye.
That’s all external talk, though. Internally, Leslie Frazier’s message is an easy one.
Focus on the Lions.
“One of the things I tried to get across to our players and our leadership, is we’re still very early in the season,” Frazier said on Wednesday while meeting with reporters. “Our focus needs to be on the Detroit Lions and finding a way to get a win on Sunday. That’s where our energy and focus has to be throughout this week. Just continue to move forward, one day at a time, and that means having a good day today at practice and a good day tomorrow and a good day on Friday as well.”
Frazier’s message is the right one to convey to his team. But it’s not as easy to expect those outside the building to take the same approach.
Both perspectives of this weekend’s game against the Lions are correct, though.
No matter how you shake it, Sunday’s game is a big one for the Vikings.
“We got a home game this week against a divisional opponent,” Frazier said on Monday. “It’s a big game. Any game in the division. The sense of urgency has nothing to do with where our record is now. But the fact we’re playing a divisional opponent at home. We just got to find a way this weekend.”
Tags: Leslie Frazier
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