A Vikings coach wasn’t happy about players falling last week
A Minnesota Vikings coach appeared to be irritated Thursday about his players slipping at Lambeau Field in Week 17. The Vikings had trouble keeping their footing against the Green Bay Packers in a frustrating loss for Minnesota. The Packers didn’t have the same issues staying up in adverse conditions on the field. And that was part of the difference that allowed the Packers to blowout the Vikings 41-17.
— Luke Braun (@LukeBraunNFL) January 4, 2023
The Vikings’ struggles on the field had Minnesota fans offering up illogical conspiracy theories that the Packers’ field crews purposely sabotaged the grass where Vikings players would have a disadvantage. Vikings offensive coordinator Wes Phillips didn’t buy that crazy theory.
According to Kevin Seifert with ESPN, Phillips had a harsh message for Vikings players Thursday. Phillips blamed players for not wearing the recommended “7-stud” cleats and not adjusting their techniques to the elements at Lambeau Field:
“We definitely have to take the conditions into account, and we have to be professional about whatever the environment we’re playing in. The margin for error in this league is small. I assume you’re talking about guys slipping down on the ground? It was noticeable that it happened with us, and it didn’t happen with them.
It was something that was addressed, but guys got to understand the margin for error is so small. It can’t be like, ‘Oh, I’ll get it next time.’ You don’t know how many times you’re going to have that play to change a game or continue a drive.
We have to be professional about it. Whether it’s technique at times — you cut off the wrong foot on any surface, you’re going to fall down. But it was noticeable. It has been addressed prior to the game and post-game. We’ve got to be better there.”
It seems pretty clear that multiple people in the Vikings organization were irritated with how often players slipped on the Lambeau Field turf last week, especially those who didn't wear the recommended 7-stud cleats. OC Wes Phillips had a sharp response on the issue today: pic.twitter.com/SIQZroqt9a— Kevin Seifert (@SeifertESPN) January 5, 2023
This issue was something that needed to be addressed by players and the staff before the game Sunday. Both teams knew the grass would be a factor with the weather conditions. The Vikings, who play in a dome, were especially vulnerable to not being prepared for playing in Green Bay. The players needed to practice footwork during the week to stay up. And they needed their equipment staff to provide the correct cleats.