|Frazier has been rewarded for a strong 2012 season. (Getty Images)|
After recording a 10-6 mark this past season, the Vikings have picked up the option on coach Leslie Frazier's contract, the AP reports.
Frazier took over as the interim head coach after Minnesota fired Brad Childress 10 games into the 2010 season, and after leading the Vikings to a 3-13 season in 2011, Frazier (with the help of MVP Adrian Peterson) helped them to a playoff appearance this past season.
If he hadn't been extended, Frazier would have entered 2013 in the final year of his contract -- now his lame-duck season would be in 2014. Though general manager Rick Spielman wouldn't comment on contract discussions midway through the season, he allowed that Frazier has performed admirably.
“Leslie's been doing an outstanding job,” Spielman said in November. “Knowing the situation that we were going to have [with] a lot of new faces on this roster, I think the coaching staff has done an outstanding job.”
“… We can bring in guys that are talented, but it's our coaches who should get the credit for developing these guys. Because you know you're going to have some ups and downs, especially when you have a young roster. But our coaches and Leslie do a very good job of working with these kids. And I think that has shown so far this year.”
Frazier's performance was impressive this season because, as CBSSports.com's Joe Oberle points out, the Vikings went from one of the oldest teams in the league to the fourth-youngest.
Of course, the remarkable return of Peterson from his mega-knee injury from December 2011 was a big reason the Vikings played so well, but Frazier's defense also improved dramatically from 2011 to 2012 (going from 31st in points allowed to 14th).
Now, the next order of business for the Vikings: Figure out what to do about Percy Harvin.
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