After a 5-10-1 season in Minnesota, the Vikings have announced that head coach Leslie Frazier has been dismissed.
"We have tremendous respect and appreciation for Leslie and what he has done for the Minnesota Vikings," team owner Zygi Wilf said in an official statement. "He stepped in and established a strong positive culture here and he has been the consummate professional as our head coach and in this community. Making this change is difficult, but what we determined is best for the organization."
"Unfortunately, we did not achieve consistent success and did not achieve the progress we expected." Vikings GM Rick Spielman added in the statement. "We believe a coaching change is needed to help build a successful team moving forward."
After being named interim head coach following the dismissal of head coach Brad Childress back in November of 2010, Frazier officially took over the permanent head coaching job on January 3rd of 2011. His first season at the helm the Vikings completed their worst season since 1984, finishing 3-13 and showed major improvement in year two when they went 10-6, which marked the biggest turnaround in franchise history.
Frazier's coaching career began at Trinity International University back in 1988, where he spent eight seasons as the program's very first head coach just three years removed from his playing days as a player with the Chicago Bears. From there he worked as the defensive backs coach at Illinois (1997-1998), and has been in the NFL as a defensive backs coach or defensive coordinator ever since, working with the Eagles, Bengals, Colts, and Vikings prior to his first NFL head coaching appointment with the Vikings.
Frazier finished his four year head coaching debut in Minnesota with a 21-32-1 overall record, including one trip to the postseason in 2012. This year they opened the season by losing seven of their first eight games.
The next head coach will inherit (arguably) the best running back in the NFL, but will need to develop a young quarterback corp to get the Vikings to the next level.
We'll update you with more information as it becomes available.