Deal Terminate: Vikings’ $8 Million Starter Put on leave Notice After Coach’s Statement…

Minnesota Vikings starting running back Alexander Mattison‘s role has been called into question after a costly fumble in last week’s loss to the Denver Broncos, prompting head coach Kevin O’Connell to address the matter with six games left in the season.

In his Wednesday news conference, O’Connell was asked if Mattison’s second-half fumble that was key in a 21-20 loss to the Broncos last week would impact his touches going forward.

“It’s very important that our guys understand how important it is to possess the football,” O’Connell said on November 22, per ESPN’s Kevin Seifert. “We have to be critical and make sure there is an accountability factor there

After starting the season with seven lost fumbles, the second most by any team since 2000, the Vikings seemingly had solved their turnover issues until last Sunday.

Minnesota fumbled the ball twice and had three total turnovers in a 21-20 loss to the Broncos. Mattison’s fumble allowed Denver to score a field goal to begin the fourth quarter, trimming the Vikings’ lead to a single possession.

The team’s 14 fumbles lost is the most by any team this season, while Minnesota ranks 26th in turnover differential.

Last week’s loss to the Broncos was the first game the Vikings lost the turnover battle since a Week 5 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. Since then, Minnesota is 5-1, with the Broncos loss being the first game the Vikings had turned the ball over more than twice since Week 2.

“I think that’s something we’re going to fix one way or the other,” O’Connell said in a September 25 news conference. “Either guys are going to [fix] it or we’re going to have to put other guys in the game that have ball security.

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