Another Vikings off-field incident prompts reaction from Rick Spielman

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The Vikings have had a rough time on the field this year.  They’ve had a rough time off the field, too, with more arrests in the last three weeks than victories for the entire season.

Earlier this week, cornerback A.J. Jefferson was cut after being arrested for domestic violence.  Earlier this month, and previously unknown to the media, linebacker Erin Henderson generated a blood-alcohol reading of 0.11 percent after a traffic stop.

According to Brian Murphy of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Henderson’s license was stripped but he has not yet been arrested or charged with a crime. In a move that could be described only as ballsy, Henderson has sued for the restoration of his license.  He contends that the authorities did not have probable cause to explore that which the testing confirmed:  Henderson was over the legal limit.

Henderson missed Sunday’s game against the Packers for personal reasons.  The team’s leading tackler in 2013, Henderson was replaced by Audie Cole.

Combined with a November 9 DUI arrest for receiver Jerome Simpson, the Vikings have decided to speak out.

“The fact that we have had three recent off field situations is unacceptable and disappointing,” G.M. Rick Spielman said in a statement issued by the team earlier on Wednesday.  “Our organization looks at each situation and the circumstances involved to determine our actions with those players and how to best move forward.

“The Vikings have a comprehensive approach with our player development program and excellent resources that are a part of this organization, but certainly we will take a methodical look at how we can improve upon our current programs to prevent these situations in the future.”

The best evidence that the current programs aren’t working is that the incidents are happening.  And a mixture of a poor performance on the field and embarrassing performances off the field can and will be used against everyone in a position of influence within the organization.

73 responses to “Another Vikings off-field incident prompts reaction from Rick Spielman

  1. When asked for comment, all 3 players arrested blamed it on the officials in the 2009 NFC Championship game
    0-4

  2. This combined with the performance of Audie Cole at MLB last week may make Henderson’s return less than certain.

    It may also lead to some non-player personnel changes within the organization.

  3. Rick Spielman is the disappointment! He should figure out that the right thing to do is to fire himself. How does he justify keeping his job? I’m a Lions fan and even I’m pissed off. I don’t want to win the division against only 2 competitors, I want no joke teams in my division. Get him out of here and get somebody who understands football management strategy.

  4. THIS is why NFL owners need behavior clauses in the player contracts.

    IMO, anytime a player gets busted for DUI/DWI/BWI, etc then he is fined 2 game checks…period.

    That should get his attention, and if he offends again then he is cut forthwith and his bonus money must be paid back to the team in full.

  5. Below average player….above average drinker. If we were playing drinking games I’m convinced we would win a Super Bowl!!

    Yet more examples of why the “leadership..aka coaching staff” needs to exit Minnesota!! You can’t blame moronic behavior on coaching completely, but in sport…when you see this type of “side-behavior” it ALWAYS reflects on the staff….and should to some degree.
    Frazier coaching staff victories: 2
    Frazier coaching staff DWI’s: 2

  6. Looks like Johny Manziel has a couple of drinking buddies already.

    Henderson is an outside linebacker not a middle linebacker, playing him there is almost as stupid as signing a cast-off QB and then starting him 9 days later on Monday Night Football… oh, wait.

  7. Ohh it’s par for the course.

    If THEY really cared you be would required

    to blow prior to starting you car.

    Just like you have to wear a seat-belts, just regulate it all ready…..

    ohhh wait it might cut down on your State revenue for DUI costs.

    Just saying….for those that claim they don’t drink sign a wavier if convicted then 1 yr in prison.

    Done next problem.

  8. Kudos for Spielman standing up to principles.

    When there are issues, meet them head on.

    Henderson should also be arrested for impersonating a starting MLB. He can’t hit gaps, can’t get off blocks……for once the sive in the middle was bunched up against the packers when Audie Cole started his first game. He nailed Tolzien first play of the game, and later hit Flynn with the force of a mack truck. Cole could be a keeper……Erin, not so much!

  9. talking on a phone, eating a hamburger or yelling at kids in the back seat is MORE dangerous than a person driving with a .11BAC. Arrests like Henderson are more about feeding the DD money machine than safety. I hope he wins his case.

  10. at least vikes management addresses the issue. not like the seahawks who say nothing, hoping problems will be forgotten

  11. “thestrategyexpert says:
    Nov 27, 2013 1:15 PM
    Rick Spielman is the disappointment! He should figure out that the right thing to do is to fire himself. How does he justify keeping his job? I’m a Lions fan and even I’m pissed off. I don’t want to win the division against only 2 competitors, I want no joke teams in my division. Get him out of here and get somebody who understands football management strategy”
    ========================
    I can agree about the “fire speilman” comment but then you lose all credibility when you say “you want no joke teams in my division”……you obviously haven’t been a Lion’s fan for the last 50 years.

  12. It’s not “ballsy” at all, Mike. Challenging the revocation of a license is pretty much standard practice when there’s an implied consent test. Can’t wait for a charging decision because the time limit for filing runs from the date of the test that led to the revocation. It just means Henderson got himself a lawyer. Too bad the lawyer can’t help him with the fact that Audie Cole is taking his job.

  13. Don’t forget that other little embarrassment about their owner losing a lawsuit that got dragged on for 21-years to the tune of $80MM he cheated his partners out of! Great year for the Vikings.

  14. Both Audie Cole and Michael Mauti have a better future at MLB than Henderson does. May as well cut him, and Simpson too. Neither one will be with the team next year.

    Unfortunately for Simpson and Henderson, they don’t play in Green Bay. There, the police wear Packer badges on their uniforms. I’m guessing when they stop a Packer after a night of revelry, they probably drive him home and keep things quiet.

  15. Why exactly was he NOT charged? Seems he got away light by only having his driver’s license revoked and not being IN JAIL, now he has the audacity to sue because of THAT?!?!?!

  16. “duece5 says:
    Nov 27, 2013 1:21 PM
    Kudos for Spielman standing up to principles.

    When there are issues, meet them head on.”
    ========================
    You are kidding about Speilman right?? Principles? Don’t kid yourself my friend, Speilman has no more principles than any other NFL GM. If a player is a starter, nothing happens to him, if he is a backup or fringe player an example is made of him. See Chris Cook vs. AJ Jefferson, both arrested for domestic abuse and Speilman stated (about Cook 2 yrs ago) “we as an organization support our players and want to offer our support, encouragement and resources to Chris as he works through this difficult time”, last week, AJ Jefferson it was “asti lavista baby”.

  17. Jefferson cut; was mediocre anyway. Simpson lost his starting spot to Patterson, which should have happened long ago. Simpson by the way won’t be back with the team next year. Henderson is way over his head at MLB, and is nothing more than a suitable WLB. Cole should start in the middle for the rest of the year. In a way it would be nice to see more of this to weed out some of the garbage.

  18. Cut all three. Erin is highly overrated by the organization because he’s the little brother of one of the better defensive players, on and off the field, the vikes have had in recent years.
    Oh yeah, front office and coaching staff gone too. Rebuild.

  19. It gets even better:

    From the star tribune:
    “Eden Prairie police said Henderson was stopped for possible drunken driving and possession of a controlled substance”

    Possession of a controlled substance????

  20. You can blow a .11 after having a couple of glasses of wine at dinner. Hardly impaired as much as someone texting, talking, etc, while driving. He wasn’t charged with anything. Plus, what’s the +/- error % on those damn things anyway. Not saying he shouldn’t be drinking and driving, but lets be realistic, he wasn’t completely obliterated and intoxicated at .11.

  21. how many of us would be fired with a possible dui charge? yet these millionaires get to keep their jobs. unacceptable.

    Simpson, Henderson, Cook should all be cut.

  22. Here’s a plan, as a UK viking fan I come on here to get news and chat about my team with fellow supporters of my team.

    I do not come on here to read from packer trolls so let’s try:

    Not feeding the troll, not even giving them thumbs down. Let their fellow trolls thumb them up (they like that) all they want but let’s not even give a reaction.

    Also let’s not go onto packer news and troll them, I’m from the UK so maybe that’s why I don’t buy into the trolling, I just want to follow my team however good or bad they are.

    Skol guys Skol

  23. thejuddstir:

    Correct, I haven’t been a Lions fan for 50 years, but that’s only because I’m not 50 years old yet. I have been a Lions fan for a very long time, and I’m well aware of how much of a joke we were, and still are. I just wrote a scathing post yesterday about the Lions on another site that was extremely aggressive and likely painful for many fans to read.

    I believe the Lions should be 11-0 because this is the most fluky season I have EVER seen in terms of all 11 of our opponents each playing a horrible game. This has never happened like this before, and we have no business having lost any of those games.

    Trust me I came down pretty hard on the team and I hold my own team accountable exactly the same as I hold every other team accountable. The Lions are failures, colossal failures, this year and ever year in the past. And that needs to change too.

    But right now we are talking about Spielman and the hapless Vikings.

  24. I agree with the comments here that Henderson is a terrible excuse for a MLB. He’s actually a disaster. But I am not entirely convinced that he is in the wrong about fighting the idea that he was pulled over without sufficient cause. Of course, having all the details would make it easier to decide this.

  25. paulsimpsonv5 says:
    Nov 27, 2013 2:17 PM
    Here’s a plan, as a UK viking fan I come on here to get news and chat about my team with fellow supporters of my team.

    I do not come on here to read from packer trolls….

    *******************************************

    The Vikings haven’t been relevant since Henry VIII.

  26. filthymcnasty1:

    How about the Jags or Bucs move to the new stadium in Minnesota and the Vikings just move to the UK? Sign me as the GM now so I can lock down Gruden and Mariucci and then it’s all over for everybody else. Well once we get rid of all the QBs for some new ones. Maybe you will be happy if your team becomes the only relevant team, how’s that for a change of pace?

    Or stick with Spielman’s crappy plan and continue to watch AP’s legacy dwindle away. I’ll be on my couch waiting for the offer.

  27. assuredmutualdestruction says:Nov 27, 2013 1:04 PM

    If this was the Seahawks, there’d be a few hundred comments on this.

    Your correct…..probably because Seahawk players break the rules and the law on an ongoing annual basis.

  28. paulsimpsonv5 says:
    Nov 27, 2013 2:17 PM
    Here’s a plan, as a UK viking fan I come on here to get news and chat about my team with fellow supporters of my team.

    I do not come on here to read from packer trolls….

    *******************************************

    Christian Ponder throws like Anne Boleyn.

  29. Some of this is on Spielman for drafting players with character issues. Usually, he is just terrible at drafting QB’s but now all of his warts are starting to show.

    I hope the Wilf’s just chalk it up to bad luck and bring both Spielman and Frazier back in 2014. They deserve another year, after all, if you can bring your team to the playoffs with Ponder as the starter, you are half way to a miracle worker status. Forget the fact they promptly lost in the playoffs, that’s what all Viking teams do, its in their DNA

  30. So this can be summed up with:

    Erin Henderson is an idiot and drives drunk.

    Erin Henderson gets lucky and media doesn’t pick up on it.

    Erin Henderson is therefor home free.

    BUT, Erin Henderson, having recently established a precedent of stupidity by driving drunk in the first place, sues to get his license back even though he clearly failed the test

    THEN, of course, the media doesn’t miss this portion of the story and he in now gonna be crucified.

    I will sum up by summary by saying:

    This guy is an idiot.

  31. This guy is the perfect role model for his fan base.

    Named after a girl, plays like a girl, drinks and drives, mates with relatives.

    That last part Erin may or may not do, but Vikings fans have obviously been doing this for generations. Stupidity like theirs is unique.

  32. I was going to do a “was he out with Jared Allen?” spoof, but he’s missing games for personal reasons and 2 DUIs in a few months…..this guys sounds like a walking time bomb.

    I don;t see this ending well for him or anyone around him.

    Get some help, son.

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