The Vikings took a look at free agent kickers this week after Blair Walsh missed two kicks and botched a kickoff during last weekend’s loss to the Lions, but opted to stick with him for the moment.
Coach Mike Zimmer said that he still believes in Walsh, although special teams coach Mike Priefer thinks the perceived lack of belief in him may play a role in Walsh getting better. Priefer said that Walsh was rankled by the team’s perusal of other options and that it will be a good thing for him in the long run.
“I knew how he would react because I’ve known him now for five-plus years,” Priefer said, via the Pioneer Press. “It kind of lit a fire under him. [Walsh] got ticked off in a good way, I think, because he’s a competitive young man. … If he didn’t react that way, I would be really worried and then we probably would be looking for another guy. … If he’s going to feel sorry for himself, then he’s not the guy we want.”
Priefer described himself as “a glass half-full guy” and said he thinks Walsh will be the kicker in Minnesota for the rest of the season. With seven missed kicks for a team that can’t afford to leave points on the table if they’re going to snap their current losing streak, Priefer might get an argument about how that glass looks from a few people in Minnesota.