With his team playing better lately, Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier could at least claim that he was improving the team and building towards a better 2014, something FOX Sports' Jay Glazer reported may save his job.
After Minnesota's most lopsided loss of the season Sunday against Cincinnati, what could have been his last vestige of hope may have gone out the window.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Sunday, citing multiple league sources, that Vikings ownership has stated to others around the league that they are planning to make a head coaching change after the 2013 season.
Sports Illustrated's Peter King backed up the report Sunday night, saying his sources also believe Leslie will be shown the door.
These reports come one week after outlets reported that Minnesota had contacted Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien, a former offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots.
The Purple are also reportedly interested in Vanderbilt head coach James Franklin.
O'Brien's buyout from his Penn State contract was previously nearly $20 million, but the plot thickened today when a restated contract showed that the buyout has been reduced to just under $7 million.
It was thought that the buyout price may be too high for Minnesota considering they are also on the hook for the rest of Frazier's contract, which runs through 2014, and since they would also have to pay the salary of O'Brien. Should the rumors of Minnesota being interested in O'Brien be true though, the "too expensive" argument may no longer hold water.
After the loss today, Frazier would not address his job security directly, but didn't sound completely sold on being around next week, let alone next year.
"We’ll have some internal discussions, but we have one more game in this season. I’m looking forward to hopefully coaching that final game and getting us a win.”
Hopefully doesn't exactly inspire confidence for Frazier fans.
One of Frazier's biggest supporters is superstar running back Adrian Peterson, who stated after the game he will lobby for Frazier to keep his job, telling the Pioneer Press it would "hurt" if the head coach was dismissed.
Only time will tell as the rumors continue to swirl, though with all the emerging reports, it seems it may just be a matter of weeks before the Vikings are without a head coach.