Notebook: Frazier addresses McKinnie release

Leslie Frazier (Leon Halip/Getty)

Leslie Frazier wouldn't say exactly why Bryant McKinnie was released, but he said it wasn't just to send a message and it wasn't for salary-cap reasons.

Leslie Frazier was vague on his reasons for releasing left tackle Bryant McKinnie, but he did say that finances and sending a message to players weren't the reasons.

"One of the things in Bryant's situation, although I've never mentioned why we parted ways, it just wasn't a good fit for what we're trying to do and where we're trying to go. As I mentioned, I want nothing but the best for him. But for us, what we're trying to do, the timing just wasn't right."

Frazier said he had an idea last Wednesday, when players were reporting to the team facility following the lockout, that there was a problem.

"It was just a matter of what we were trying to do to get ready for the season, it just wasn't going to work in a timely fashion for us to be able to do the things we wanted to do," Frazier said. "So organizationally, after much discussion, [we] decided this was what's best for our football team."

The Star Tribune reported that McKinnie weighed close to 400 pounds, but Frazier continued to say that he never addressed the reason why McKinnie was released.
He did say McKinnie's contract status – he was due to count $5.4 million against the $120.375 million salary cap – had nothing to do with it.

"Not at all. Left tackle, you don't just dispense of those guys for money reasons. Those are the guys you pay money to. No, money was not an issue," Frazier said.

He also said the decision had nothing to do with a first-year coach looking to put his mark on the team or trying to send a message to players.

"More than anything, I want to bring a championship to Minnesota. I've been around some championship organizations and teams and I feel like I have a feel for what it takes from a player's standpoint as well as a coach's standpoint to put that together," Frazier said. "That's what every decision is based on. Every decision. You look at our roster, who's here, who's not. Every decision is based purely on that – what's going to bring us a championship in Minnesota."


  • Adrian Peterson's fiancée had a baby boy Monday night. Peterson left at the end of Monday afternoon's practice, when she was in labor, and the star running back is expected to return for Friday's practice.

  • Linebacker Kenny Onatolu had a walking boot on his left foot. Frazier said it was a stress fracture and classified Onatolu as "day to day."

  • Linebacker Chad Greenway signed his franchise tender, paying him about $10 million dollars on a one-year contract, but the Vikings continue to work on a long-term deal with him. "Hopefully something will happen here soon," Frazier said. "It doesn't seem that it's affecting him in any way. He's having a great two days of camp, so things are moving right along."

  • Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf visited camp on Wednesday afternoon for the first time this year. The afternoon practice was just a walkthrough, but they will be back for the full-pads session on Thursday morning. They spoke to the team after practice and players broke out in applause afterwards.

    "It was our team's first chance of meeting them [this year], so we applaud our ownership. Those guys are writing the checks," Frazier said with a smile.

    Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.

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