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Vikings' Frazier says he's on the same page as QB McNabb

Leslie Frazier and Donovan McNabb are tied together by a 13-year relationship that helped bring the veteran quarterback to Minnesota in July. That relationship has become more important than ever as criticism of both player and coach mount in the wake of an 0-4 start that's the Vikings' worst since 2002.

The two met Monday after a 22-17 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. Frazier has faced questions about some of his in-game decisions, and McNabb's inconsistency has some calling for rookie Christian Ponder to take over at quarterback.

"The fact that we have a history together makes it a little easier to be pointed in conversations and not have to dance around issues and vice versa," Frazier said Wednesday. "Both of us being able to communicate on that level, it does help."

Frazier was hired as a defensive assistant on Andy Reid's staff in Philadelphia in 1999, when the Eagles drafted McNabb in the first round, and the two found common ground.

So when the Vikings went looking for a quarterback this summer after the retirement of Brett Favre, Frazier wanted McNabb, who was benched twice during a forgettable year in Washington. Frazier turned to McNabb over other candidates such as Matt Hasselbeck, Bruce Gradkowski and Kerry Collins.

McNabb took a significant pay cut to complete the trade and come to Minnesota, hoping to revive his career with his new coach. But running a new offense without a full offseason to get it down, McNabb ranks 30th in the NFL in passing yards, 28th in yards per completion and 22nd in completion percentage.

Playing under a heavy rush on most occasions, McNabb has completed just 37 percent of his passes on third down. That has kept the Vikings from sustaining drives, particularly in the second half as they've let games slip away.

That prompted the meeting Monday, and McNabb said he also met with offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave and quarterbacks coach Craig Johnson to "iron out some wrinkles" in the offense.

"We sat down on Monday and went into detail about where we are, where we need to be and what has to be done going forward," Frazier said. "I think we're on the same page, we know what we have to get done. I know he's eager to get back on the field, eager to play another game and helping to right the ship."

Notes: The St. Paul Pioneer Press reported CB Antoine Winfield is expected to miss Sunday's game at Arizona with a neck injury, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. ... Center John Sullivan (left ankle) and punter Chris Kluwe (hamstring) also missed practice Wednesday because of injuries, and their status for Sunday's game is uncertain. ... Four other Vikings -- safety Husain Abdullah (pelvis), LB E.J. Henderson (knee), safety Jamarca Sanford (knee) and LT Charlie Johnson (elbow) -- were limited in practice.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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