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Childress could use a win to smooth waters

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Posted Nov. 04, 2010 @ 8:05 p.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

Each week we focus on a Vikings player or coach who is in the spotlight. Heading into Sunday's game against the Cardinals, it's head coach Brad Childress.

There's no question our Viking in the spotlight this week is Brad Childress, whose status with the team is being described as tenuous.

He has fallen on the sword for the failed Randy Moss experiment, and talk of players not being very fond of him in the first place has run rampant this week.

Childress needs a win. Lose to the Cardinals, and he might be out of a job. It's amazing how fast things have fallen apart since the loss in last season's NFC championship game.

He'll have to do it Sunday without Moss, and perhaps without Percy Harvin, who has a tender ankle.

The possibility of things unraveling quickly is high, so Childress must lean on his strengths, namely Adrian Peterson.

The defense has been good but has holes: The secondary is a trouble spot, and the pass rush has been nowhere near as good as last season.

That's why Peterson must become the coach's workhorse, even more now than he has been through seven games.

Childress can't worry now about who likes him or who doesn't. He just has to find a way to go on a little hot streak.

Peterson has the ability to carry a team on his back, and his quiet demeanor might be the perfect antidote for the crazy atmosphere surrounding Winter Park these days.

If Childress wants to keep his job, he must show he is a good football coach. We know he's not a great communicator, and that concern will work itself out behind closed doors. Owner Zygi Wilf is not happy with the way things went down, and he might have to start thinking about how his front office is structured.

But the things that can save Childress' job are wins on Sundays. This team has a lot of turf to make up to even be relevant again, but there's no questioning the power of a win to (temporarily, at least) calm the waters.

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