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Updated: December 30th, 2013 6:21pm
Ex-Vikings kicker tweets: 'Too bad they fired the wrong guy up there'

Ex-Vikings kicker tweets: 'Too bad they fired the wrong guy up there'

by Judd Zulgad
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Ryan Longwell made it clear Monday where he stands on the Minnesota Vikings' decision to fire Leslie Frazier as their head coach.

Let's just say if it had been up to the retired kicker, he would have shown general manager Rick Spielman the door.

How do we know this? Simple, Longwell took to Twitter to share his thoughts.

"So sorry to see Leslie Frazier go," Longwell tweeted. "Great coach, even better man of integrity. Too bad they fired the wrong guy up there."

Although he did not name Spielman, it didn't take much to put 2 and 2 together.

Longwell's feelings should have come as no surprise. He was released by the Vikings in May 2012 shortly after Spielman drafted kicker Blair Walsh in the sixth round.

It wasn't very difficult to figure out that the move was made by Spielman. He had been named general manager after the Vikings' 3-13 finish in 2011, giving him full control of the 53-man roster.

Frazier and Spielman had shared personnel power in 2011 and Longwell was signed to a four-year extension before that season that included a $3.5 million signing bonus.

Longwell, who spent six years with the Vikings after nine in Green Bay, had made 22 of 28 field goals in 2011. He had never been known for his kickoffs.

The Longwell move was made to save money and because Spielman wanted to turn over the roster.

Walsh was outstanding as a rookie, setting an NFL record with 10 field goals of 50-plus yards and three of 50-plus in a game. He made 35 of 38 field-goal attempts in the regular season and was elected to the Pro Bowl.

Walsh wasn't as effective this season and was bothered by a hamstring injury at times. He made 26 of 30 field-goal attempts and missed one extra-point. His touchbacks decreased from 53 to 43, despite the fact he had only two fewer kickofs.

Judd Zulgad is a columnist for He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays and "Saturday Morning SportsTalk" from 10 a.m. to noon on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
Email Judd | @1500ESPNJudd | Mackey & Judd