Sure sounds like Spielman told Josh Freeman what to say during QB's introductory interview
Spielman (right) is apparently both the Vikings' GM and their unofficial interview coach.
Yesterday, Vikings brass introduced their shiny brand new non-Christian Ponder quarterback, Josh Freeman (pictured above at left), to the Minnesota media in a conference call.
General Manager Rick Spielman talked for about 15 minutes before turning it over to Freeman. But if you listen close, it sure sounds like he didn't totally turn it over to him. At the beginning of Freeman's remarks, and also when he was asked a couple of tough questions later on, you can hear Spielman whispering sweet nothings to him about what he should say.
Spielman's whispering voice is audible at least three different times during Freeman's portion of the interview, which you can listen to here.
The first instance, at the 14:32 mark, comes just as Freeman is making his opening remarks. Spielman can be heard saying something like, "Just say you're excited to be here." Freeman then says, "I'm pumped up to be a Minnesota Viking."
The second, at 16:35, comes after a reporter asks Freeman, "What happened between you and Greg Schiano?" Schiano is the coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Freeman's former team, and some sort of irreparable rift between them culminated in Tampa making the unusual move to release Freeman, their opening game starting quarterback, in the middle of the season.
As Freeman struggled to answer that question, a whispering Spielman can be heard saying something like, "everything down there was great." Freeman then says, "I had a lot of great memories there, a lot of good times with the fellas."
The last instance, occurring at the 26:30 mark, comes after Freeman is asked if reports he only wanted a one-year deal with the Vikings are true. Spielman can be heard whispering something to Freeman about "your business." Then Freeman says: "I didn't really take a whole lot of interest in the actual negotiations. My main focus was where can I go to better myself the most."
Let's hope Freeman receives equally thorough coaching from Leslie Frazier and company when it comes to trying to resuscitate his once-promising career on the field.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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