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COJOMAY
03-26-2006, 04:37 AM
'Plan is coming together'
Wilf very happy with direction Vikings are headed
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2006/football/nfl/03/25/bc.fbn.vikings.freeagen.ap/index.html
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) -- An incredibly busy free agent season is winding to a close, and Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf couldn't be happier with how his newly hired football bosses pulled it off.

"We did a lot of different changes here. ... It's a big change," Wilf said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. "It's exciting because it's really starting to feel like our team," Wilf said. "Before it was someone else's team. Now it's our team."

The Vikings were easily one of the most active teams in the early free agent period, signing 10 new players, including a record contract for guard Steve Hutchinson.

Shortly after the Vikings capped a 9-7 season and missed the playoffs, Wilf installed a completely new regime at the top. He hired head coach Brad Childress to be at the top of a so-called "triangle of authority," working with new personnel man Fran Foley and salary cap guru Rob Brzezinski to remake -- not rebuild -- the Vikings.

They wasted little time getting going, signing Hutchinson, running back Chester Taylor and kicker Ryan Longwell among others.

"We've got together a great group of free agents this year," Wilf said. "The coach is doing what he likes to do, what he has to do, and that's put a team together. It's my job to facilitate that movement."

And facilitate, he has.

The Vikings entered the offseason with $31 million in cap space, ready to compete with the best of them for the top-tier free agents.

They burst out of the gates with three signings on the first day -- Taylor, Longwell and linebacker Ben Leber -- and didn't slow down for the next two weeks.

Initial reports had the Vikings interested in signing Colts running back Edgerrin James, but after they signed Taylor to a relatively modest $14 million deal, it was clear where they were headed.

They threw $49 million at Hutchinson and structured the deal so it made it nearly impossible to match, solidifying an offensive line that was one of the team's weak points last season.

"I'm happy to see that the direction is going the way it has," Wilf said. "Now I think we have to move on and concentrate on the draft. That's certainly the avenue that we will build our team for the future."

The Vikings also signed safety Tank Williams, defensive end DeQuincy Scott, backup quarterback Mike McMahon, fullback Tony Richardson, guard Jason Whittle and fullback Joey Goodspeed.

"Part of the plan from the beginning was to take pressure off the draft," Foley said. "The plan is coming together."

They also parted ways with disenchanted quarterback Daunte Culpepper, sending him to Miami for a second-round pick, and re-signed receiver Koren Robinson.

When Wilf first unveiled the triangle of authority, it wasn't exactly clear how the three would work together. But it became evident that Childress is the lead dog, with significant input coming from Foley and Brzezinski.

"A new coaching staff has to learn to work with each other. And three of us, Rob and Fran and the coach, have to understand what the coaches' needs are," Wilf said. "And so far I have to say that what we've done in free agency, I'm very, very positive. I think we did great in free agency."

And Wilf hasn't just been an innocent bystander, sitting back and signing the checks that those three tell him to sign. In the middle of last season, he pledged to be more hands-on in the football business.

He admitted this week that the bulk of his time is spent with the Vikings now, with the rest of his trusted family doing the heavy lifting with his real estate development business back in New Jersey.

Wilf said Friday that he doesn't necessarily want to be a "hands-on" owner, but a "head-on" owner, meaning he chooses the people to run the show, then lets them do their jobs and directs the traffic when he needs to.

So far, he likes what he sees.

"We spent our money wisely and we were focused and I think we've grown the nucleus of our team to I think greater heights," Wilf said. "Then again, the next couple seasons will tell the story. We're looking long-term here. ... It takes time for a team, both the players and the coaching staff to really meld together, and that's something as a new owner I don't really know how long it will take."

viks_fan21
03-26-2006, 04:53 AM
Wow, that's interesting. I didn't read it all, I think I have ADHD. How random was that???

shockzilla
03-26-2006, 04:59 AM
The plan IS coming together, isn't it!!!!!

chilifoot
03-26-2006, 05:13 AM
i like the fact that they are planning for the future of the franchise and not selling it for a chance at just one championship this year.

damien927
03-26-2006, 05:13 AM
I like the plan.... it will be complete when we pull off a crazy draft!!!!

GreenBaySlackers
03-26-2006, 05:26 AM
this sounds like a plan that every team has, make the draft as easy as possible? ah duh?

magicci
03-26-2006, 05:32 AM
yeah at least they arent aiming to high and bringing the fans hope of a superbowl this year and if by chance we do make it then it will be even sweeter.

chilifoot
03-26-2006, 05:53 AM
i think they expect to make the playoffs, and their main goal of course, as every team's should be, is to win the Superbowl, but they don't want to mortgage the future in order to do so either, because a franchise is so much more than just one championship

DiehardVikesFan
03-26-2006, 08:20 AM
"chilifoot" wrote:

i think they expect to make the playoffs, and their main goal of course, as every team's should be, is to win the Superbowl, but they don't want to mortgage the future in order to do so either, because a franchise is so much more than just one championship

How would we know that? :grin:

LL-MMan
03-26-2006, 08:24 AM
I can't imagine the life of a new stadium. That'll make games 10x better to watch then they are now, but it doesn't mean a damn until we have a ring.

ShanePurpleBlood
03-27-2006, 05:58 PM
Wilf very happy with direction Vikings are headed

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) -- An incredibly busy free agent season is winding to a close, and Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf couldn't be happier with how his newly hired football bosses pulled it off.

"We did a lot of different changes here. ... It's a big change," Wilf said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. "It's exciting because it's really starting to feel like our team," Wilf said. "Before it was someone else's team. Now it's our team."



Entire Article (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2006/football/nfl/03/25/bc.fbn.vikings.freeagen.ap/index.html)

Del Rio
03-27-2006, 06:04 PM
Time will tell.

FA signings mean very little to me until I see how well they perform in what enviroment our coaching staff puts them in.

All I take from this offseason so far, if the Vikings have a great new lineman, and they don't care to resign the free agent Vikings players. They are opting for a different mix.

That and we will not be able to use lack of money spending as an excuse. It will fall directly on the team and the coaches.

snowinapril
03-27-2006, 06:27 PM
That is right Wilf, it does feel like your team.

It doesn't feel like my team at all................I guess it will take me some time.


"We spent our money wisely and we were focused and I think we've grown the nucleus of our team to I think greater heights," Wilf said. "Then again, the next couple seasons will tell the story. We're looking long-term here. ... It takes time for a team, both the players and the coaching staff to really meld together, and that's something as a new owner I don't really know how long it will take."

I think we did spend our money wisely.

It scares me a bit about the time to "meld" comment. It is totally expected though. For all of you that think our team is better, I agree with Del's statement above, that what we did this offseason won't be seen until we see how the Coaches coach and the Players play in new surroundings. We just went through more drastic changes than last year and where did we end up.

ultravikingfan
03-27-2006, 06:42 PM
http://www.purplepride.org/index.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=20632

Already posted.

Prophet
03-27-2006, 08:15 PM
Since I'm living in Groundhog Day I'll go ahead and say the same thing over and over and over again. It seems reasonable to be optimistic just knowing that there is a new coaching staff. That is enough of a reason for me to be ecstatic. The team had a winning record last year with Homer Simpson and his staff coaching. There are theoretical upgrades at some positions and a new coaching staff. I remain cautiously optimistic about next year and very optimistic about the future.

Slade
03-27-2006, 08:24 PM
I like the direction our ship is sailing now. With Tice, it felt like our team was just slapped together at the last minute & threw them on the field. Now it seems we are aiming at becoming a "Team". This is huge, and we have great leaders now!

chilifoot
03-27-2006, 08:53 PM
"DiehardVikesFan" wrote:

"chilifoot" wrote:

i think they expect to make the playoffs, and their main goal of course, as every team's should be, is to win the Superbowl, but they don't want to mortgage the future in order to do so either, because a franchise is so much more than just one championship

How would we know that? :grin:

we don't.... but we can only hope i guess