Freeman was released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season for his poor play, and reports said he was not acting like a team leader. Freeman was not voted a team captain, and he later missed the team photo. There were reports that he was deactivated for a game because he missed team meetings, was tardy, and lacked overall accountability. It looks like that pattern repeated in Minnesota.
Freeman chose to sign with the Vikings after being released in early October. He started a game in Week 7 — just two weeks after signing with the team — and put together one of the most disastrous QB outings of the year. Freeman went 20-of-53 for 190 yards and an interception in an embarrassing 23-7 loss to the New York Giants. He complained of concussion symptoms the next day and did not take another snap at quarterback the rest of the season.
On Tuesday, USA Today’s Tom Pelissero reported that Freeman was repeatedly late to meetings and frequently one of the last players to the facility. From his report:
Four people with knowledge of the situation told USA TODAY Sports that Freeman was late for numerous meetings in his roughly three months with the Vikings. A third player said Freeman often was among the last players to the facility.
Pelissero also says the decision to start Freeman at quarterback when he clearly wasn’t ready to lead the offense perplexed many players. Freeman’s agent said the reports of his client missing meetings was “false,” but it’s difficult to believe him now that we’ve heard the same story from two different teams.
There was a time when Freeman, a former 1st-round pick by the Bucs, looked like one of the better quarterbacks in the league. Now it looks like his superb 2010 season was an exception and that he will never repeat that success again. And with the type of reputation he’s earning, he probably won’t get another chance to be a starting quarterback.