Sounds Like Kevin O’Connell is Benching Alexander Mattison

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Denver Broncos
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin O’Connell has already grown a reputation as a players coach and he’s a big reason why the Minnesota Vikings were recently voted as the most player-friendly team in the NFL.

But on Wednesday, KOC was a players coach who sounded like he was about to bench Vikings starting running back Alexander Mattison, whose 2nd half fumble vs the Denver Broncos was the key turning point in their eventual loss.

Is Kevin O’Connell about to bench Alexander Mattison?

O’Connell was asked at his press conference this afternoon if Mattison could see a decrease in usage, due to his butterfingers. His answer felt quite telling.

Fumbles aren’t Mattison’s only problem

It wasn’t the first time this season that the Vikings new RB1 has had issues hanging onto the football or the first time KOC has made threats to bench players over it. But his butterfingers aren’t Mattison’s only problem. His backup Ty Chandler has looked stronger and more explosive in recent weeks, than Alex has.

Related: NFC Playoff Picture Shines Positive Light on Minnesota Vikings

Chandler went for 7.3 YPC in his 10 carries in Denver. Mattison, in one of his better performances on the year (outside of his fumble), averaged 4.5 YPC. Oh, and Chandler threw in 4 catches for 37 receiving yards, too.

vs DenverRushRushRushRushRecRecRecRecRecFumFum
Alexander Mattison188101521-10-111
Ty Chandler1073031443701900
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/22/2023.

There are questions about Chandler’s knowledge of the Vikings offense, not to mention his deficiencies as a pass blocker. Both of those things are problems for a running back in his second season. But, so is fumbling. And Mattison’s 3.7 YPC average on the season. And whatever the hell this is…

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