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Freeman continues to be MIA in Minnesota

Freeman AP

After quarterback Josh Freeman secured his freedom from the Buccaneers (along with the right to collect the balance of his $8.43 million base salary), he selected the Vikings as his next destination.

The Vikings then rushed him to the field for a Monday night start against the Giants only two weeks after joining the team.  He threw 53 passes, emerged with a concussion, quickly healed, and then disappeared.

A first-round pick in 2009 who had twice led the Bucs to victories over the Vikings in the Metrodome, Freeman has fallen out of a two-man quarterback rotation that spins from Christian Ponder to Matt Cassel back to Ponder.

So why are the Vikings continuing to pay Freeman $166,667 per week to not contribute?  They could cut him at any time and owe him nothing, banking the cash and carrying the ensuing cap savings forward to 2014.

Apart from saving face for signing him in the first place, keeping Freeman makes him available for emergency duty, and it gives Minnesota exclusive negotiating rights on a new deal until March.  But if the Vikings aren’t ready to play Freeman after having him in the building for two months, why would they want to make a long-term commitment to him?

The bigger question that never will be answered is whether the Vikings would still sign Freeman, if they knew in October what they know now.  It’s likely safe to assume Freeman would have made a different decision.

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35 Responses to “Freeman continues to be MIA in Minnesota”
  1. tvjules says: Dec 11, 2013 9:39 AM

    From a PR strategy, the Vikes need to wait until the day Shanny names Cousins as starting QB… or he gets fired to release Freeman.
    The story will barely be mentioned.

  2. raiderlyfe510 says: Dec 11, 2013 9:41 AM

    He’s just not a smart guy nor is his agent. He should have gone to the Raiders were his former O Coordinator is, where he knows the system and terminology. He probably would have lost his job to McGloin eventually, but at least he would have had a shot.

  3. filthymcnasty1 says: Dec 11, 2013 9:43 AM

    MIA?

    DUI?

    It’s always some 3 letter acronym with these Vikings.

  4. Aqua Teen Hunger Force says: Dec 11, 2013 9:43 AM

    Another nice chunk of change made for providing nothing. He might bounce around like Matt Flynn.

  5. gbmickey says: Dec 11, 2013 9:46 AM

    They signed him for the same reason they drafted Ponder and that the GM doesnt have a clue. Need to look no further than the record to prove that.

  6. 6ball says: Dec 11, 2013 10:02 AM

    .

    As it turns out Greg Schiano made the best of the bad QB situation he inherited.

    1. He jettisoned the enigmatic Freeman.

    2. He gambled on relative unknown rookie 3rd rounder, Mike Glennon to step in and play immediately. He’s performed capably.

    3. Schiano and Dominik now have a 13 game body of work to evaluate if Glennon is the long term answer, or a QB should be pursued in the draft.

    .

  7. tokyosandblaster says: Dec 11, 2013 10:02 AM

    Much like their fan base.

    >

  8. johnnyjagfan says: Dec 11, 2013 10:03 AM

    He could have signed me for 10% of the $2M he paid Freeman and I’d of worked 90 hour weeks doing whatever he needed: painting, cleaning, laundry–whatever; and I would have brought more value to the Vikings. And y’all thought the Herschel trade was a bad deal?

  9. arnoldziffel says: Dec 11, 2013 10:04 AM

    Face it, the Vikings are not a very smart organization.

  10. mccullou009 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:05 AM

    They are doing exactly what they should be, getting one last high draft pick to sure up their defense before putting AD, freeman, rudolph, jennings, and patterson on the field together

  11. mancave001 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:08 AM

    When the Eagles visit on Sunday, things may get ugly. Philly’s defense is playing really well. Meanwhile, they put up 34 on the supposed best run defense in the league…in the snow. And the Vikings pass defense is atrocious. This one could get ugly.

    Eagles 40, Vikings 10

  12. raiderlyfe510 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:08 AM

    6ball says:
    Dec 11, 2013 10:02 AM
    .

    As it turns out Greg Schiano made the best of the bad QB situation he inherited.

    1. He jettisoned the enigmatic Freeman.

    2. He gambled on relative unknown rookie 3rd rounder, Mike Glennon to step in and play immediately. He’s performed capably.

    3. Schiano and Dominik now have a 13 game body of work to evaluate if Glennon is the long term answer, or a QB should be pursued
    ———————————————————————–

    Schiano is a good coach. He just has/had a bunch of old vets stuck in their underachieving ways. This is the challenge with most college coaches trying to adjust to the NFL. If you hire a college coach you have to willing to purge your roster of most of the vets and rebuild.

  13. bucrightoff says: Dec 11, 2013 10:09 AM

    He’s MIA, like the NFLPA investigation into the leaked information (that came from his agent).

  14. filthymcnasty1 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:10 AM

    Rick Spielman is a Mortician.

  15. thegregwitul says: Dec 11, 2013 10:15 AM

    It looks like Greg Schiano was right on this one. If only ownership allowed Schiano to move Freeman in the offseason, when he actually possessed trade value, the Bucs likely would have won two or three extra games and may have been competing for a wild card spot.

    And to those who care to click on the ‘thumbs down’, educate yourself first. Greg Schiano may not be Mr. Likeable, but look at the high quality of players the Bucs obtained in the draft due to Schiano’s input: Lavonte David, Doug Martin, Mark Barron, Keith Tandy, Johnthan Banks, Mike Glennon, Akeem Spence, William Gholston and Mike James. Sure, not a lot of household names in the group, but all of these guys are significant contributors, with Lavonte David being a legitimate superstar (the film and stats do not lie).

    As fans we can be fickle and quick to judge. I was one of them, screaming for Schiano to be fired prior to the Seattle game, but one thing never disappeared from the Bucs, through the Freeman debacle, the MERSA and the injuries; effort, hustle and never giving up. Yeah, more wins would be nice, but the Bucs have begun to turn it around during the second half of the season and with another strong draft, should be able to compete for a playoff spot in 2014.

    As for Josh Freeman, well, let’s see if he’s still in the NFL in 2014. He stole a lot of money from two teams in 2013. If he washes out, it will be a stunning fall from grace for a once promising young QB.

  16. 2ruefan says: Dec 11, 2013 10:15 AM

    There HAS to be something up with this guy. They must have discovered something about him after having him there that makes playing him a bad idea. No idea what it is, but there is just no other explanation.
    It will come out later one, but not until they let him go, or someone else gets him.. so they cannot be blamed for attempting to “blackball” him like Tampa Bay was accused of doing…

  17. jjh1982 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:16 AM

    I don’t blame him its Minnesota for Gods sake

  18. sdsmooth says: Dec 11, 2013 10:19 AM

    Now wait a minute. This is supposed to be the Vikings’ year. Their fans told us so.

    *They just came of a 10-6 season and a playoff appearance.

    *Ponder played great the last month of 2012.

    *They had 3 first round draft choices.

    *They signed Greg Jennings.

    *They signed Desmond Bishop.

    *Matt Kalil is a pro bowler.

    blah, blah, blah …

  19. whatjusthapped says: Dec 11, 2013 10:26 AM

    Ya, he is MIA but it is far better to be MIA sitting on the sidelines than to be MIA lining up at WR and DE. If you think Freeman is fleecing the Viking’s organization, look no further than Jared Allen’s $17 mil or Craig Jennings $12 million and their corresponding levels of production and you would have a hard case making Freeman the most overpaid player on the roster.

    And if you are looking for logic in signing him the first place, you picked the wrong team for that. Where is the logic in drafting a QB at #12 overall when he was rated a third or 4th round QB? Where’s the logic in drafting a WR at #7 overall that could not catch or a DE at #18 overall that could not rush the qB and leaving Rodgers waiting in the Green Room to be plucked by the Packers at #24?

    Try to remember, this is the Vikings we are talking about, organizational incompetence at a level rarely seen in the NFL.

  20. jmorand47 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:35 AM

    @ filthymcnasty1 says:
    Dec 11, 2013 9:43 AM
    MIA?

    DUI?

    It’s always some 3 letter acronym with these Vikings.

    ————————————————–
    You forgot MVP. But then again, I would expect that from you.

  21. ronbrb48 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:37 AM

    freeman was probably the worst QB ever drafted. He himself ruin the k-state football team for the 3 0r 4 years he was there. he demanded to be the starter even when there was 2 or 3 QB a lot better then . From the time he was a freshman he used the r word to get his way and guess what it worked. but i think that everyone sees what a useless ballplayer he is that the reason hes MIA

  22. aldante66 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:37 AM

    I don’t know. Maybe he is one of these guys the sixth grade was very hard on.
    The Vikes play book is farely complicated: hand off to Pederson, through a short pass to whomever just crossed the yard marker. Repeat.

  23. richcranium2112 says: Dec 11, 2013 10:50 AM

    Well there, who would want to be found in that vast football wasteland?

  24. newlydead says: Dec 11, 2013 10:56 AM

    but wasn’t it reported (here as well) a few months ago the Freeman was a “franchise” quarterback who had to get away from the mess in Tampa? I’m sure if the modern era media heads spent a little time watching tape, trying to educate themselves on what they are reporting, the situation in Minnesota wouldn’t come as such a surprise.

  25. The Great Ted Thompson the Genius says: Dec 11, 2013 10:58 AM

    sdsmooth says:Dec 11, 2013 10:19 AM

    Now wait a minute. This is supposed to be the Vikings’ year. Their fans told us so.

    *They just came of a 10-6 season and a playoff appearance.

    *Ponder played great the last month of 2012.

    *They had 3 first round draft choices.

    *They signed Greg Jennings.

    *They signed Desmond Bishop.

    *Matt Kalil is a pro bowler.

    blah, blah, blah …
    _________

    All of those things were true and were reason for optimism. I think I recall a lot of NFL experts who were predicting a Houston-Atlanta Super Bowl. It’s a funny game. The funniest part is all of the Packer fans who were predicting a Super Bowl this year.

  26. thestrategyexpert says: Dec 11, 2013 11:03 AM

    Because Spielman is an idiot. That’s the answer for every goofy decision the Vikings make.

    How much of a discount will they get to negotiate with him to offset all that weekly money? They might save like 3 or 4 dollars in the long-run IF everything works perfectly.

  27. dragonfly99 says: Dec 11, 2013 11:31 AM

    Great move Spielman. Hilarious.

  28. tremoluxman says: Dec 11, 2013 11:53 AM

    I’m 65 and was born and raised in Minnesota. I’ve been following the Vikings for decades. The Freeman situation is a head-scratcher. Speculation always runs wild when there is no official information made available.
    His first start was a mistake and proved nothing other than he was thrown into a no-win situation. A week and a half to practice and learn an offense? Joe Montana in his prime would have sucked.
    Something is fishy between the front office and Frazier. My guess is he was ordered to put Freeman in, so he did. Freeman naturally flopped, not because he’s a bad QB but because he had no legitimate chance to succeed in that game. Now the question is, why hasn’t he played since? Does he suck in practice? Does he refuse to learn the playbook? Is Frazier being stubborn? Or is he a really good QB and they’re keeping him on ice until next year while they load up on draft picks?
    I don’t know. Somebody knows something if there is a big screw-up in the works or some ‘master plan’. I’m sure it will come out after the Super Bowl.

  29. purpleguy says: Dec 11, 2013 12:04 PM

    As usual, and good for them, the Vikings aren’t tipping their hand. Seemed to work pretty good with Percy Harvin. Freeman’s salary is chump change for an NFL team.

  30. Frazier28/7 says: Dec 11, 2013 12:54 PM

    Maybe it’s because he’s terrible and we only needed one game to see that. Frazier never wanted him on the team and the games since his awful performance vs. the Giants have proven that. I’m starting to understand what Dolphin fans had warned us about with Spielman, he makes good decision and he makes really really bad decisions. Cassel should’ve started after that 0-3 start and keep Ponder on the bench, bringing in Freeman and going back to Ponder after the Carolina game was completely stupid.

    You gotta laugh at the first 29 comments with at least 20 of them from packer fans. Their class and humility never seems to end.

  31. tampamac says: Dec 11, 2013 1:34 PM

    tremoluxman,

    I take it you never watched Freeman before he got to Minnesota. That Giants game is a microcosm of who he is. A big armed, inaccurate, indecisive, scared QB who stares down his receivers and doesn’t go through his progressions. Trust me, he had us in Tampa fooled too because he’d show just enough talent to get you excited, but that’s his ceiling. The 1st 3 games he started this season were enough to turn us Tampa Bay fans off because he didn’t have any excuses. He had a 2nd full year in the offense, RB and top 2 receivers back, and a solid if unspectacular O-line. But the rookie mistakes of throwing into coverage instead of checking down, holding the ball too long and taking bad sacks, terrible clock management(Jets game), and horrible inaccuracy were not improving and that’s inexcusible for a guy entering his 5th season as a starting NFL QB. But he’s a purple problem now. Don’t dislike the guy personally, but as a QB what you saw is who he is.

  32. golforepar says: Dec 11, 2013 2:19 PM

    Freeman only came here for the money!!

    Greg Jennings

  33. Foghorn The IKonoclast says: Dec 11, 2013 2:57 PM

    And let’s not leave out Mike here, who lead the charge against coach and all but had Coach Schiano fired. Shame on you and shame on all the guys like Steve Deumig.

  34. rumbler2013 says: Dec 11, 2013 3:48 PM

    dont blame management, the guy they thought they signed is gone. I’m a Freeman-Bucs fan. But something mental-physical, or something he is doing changed him. Look at his pics 2 yrs ago then now- massive change. He went from stud to dud in 18 months. He dropped at least 40 pounds. I’ve personally seen him in action at a club or 2.

  35. purpleforroyaltygreenandgoldforbugars says: Dec 12, 2013 7:15 PM

    I love the Philly fans talking about how they will destroy the vikings.. I promise you it bothers none of us vikings, fans. In fact we are hoping for the best draft pick possible. I’d never cheer for my team to lose, but if they do lose to your Eagles I’ll sleep just fine at night… Oh and by the way, nice work firing Andy Reid who has brought great success to KC.. Also, speaking of terrible organizational moves how about those Phillies and their 171 3rd highest payroll NOT making the playoffs… Solid!

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