The League

Derede McAlpin
Crisis Litigator

Derede McAlpin

Vice President Levick Strategic Communications

High hopes, blunted expectations

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Most football fans know by now that the Minnesota Vikings fired Brad Childress one day after the Packers spanked his team, which, at three wins and seven losses, is out of playoff contention. Childress became the second NFL coach (after the Dallas Cowboys dismissed Wade Phillips) to be fired directly following a high-profile and embarrassing defeat.

The fact that both teams began the season with such high expectations guaranteed that their current woes would elevate to crisis mode.

By contrast, several teams with bleak outlooks haven't been forced to make dramatic changes mid-stream. Even Cleveland fans can take some comfort from the way the Browns have been losing. The vital signs are promising.

As to the question of which team holds the title for the most disappointing season, it's a very close call.

The dynamics of the two crises in Dallas and Minnesota differ in form. The Cowboys went into a mind-boggling free fall. When Jerry Jones fired Phillips, the beleaguered coach had few defenders. But the Vikings, also imagined in August to be a Super Bowl possibility, could have survived to fight another day with a victory over the Packers, now 6-3, which is one reason ESPN analysts have been questioning the decision to let Childress go.

In any event, it's all a question of expectations and the extent to which a single sacrifice can create a new expectation among fans that something is being done to overcome organizational inertia. The question isn't so much, should the coach be fired? The question is, does the crisis demand a sacrifice?

If so, make the sacrifice and start identifying the new opportunities that lie ahead.

By Derede McAlpin  |  November 23, 2010; 10:55 AM ET  | Category:  Brett Favre , Coaching , Dallas Cowboys , Minnesota Vikings , NFC , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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just wait until Frazier runs afoul of "Coach Favre". Hey Frazier.....for a taste......bench Favre for a few series and see what happens!!!

Posted by: wp121606 | November 23, 2010 1:15 PM

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