Vikings pick Colts assistant Williams as DC, Daly to coach D-line

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Vikings have hired Alan Williams, the defensive backs coach for the Indianapolis Colts for the past 10 years, as their new defensive coordinator.

Williams has a strong relationship with the man who hired him, head coach Leslie Frazier. They shared responsibility of the Colts defensive backs for two years, including the Super Bowl-winning team in 2006-07.

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"It was another opportunity to work together, first of all, and to win some more championships," Williams said Thursday, after signing a two-year contract.

Frazier, Williams and the rest of the Vikings have a lot of work to do coming off a 3-13 season, beginning with a depleted secondary that gave up a NFL-most 34 touchdown passes against only eight interceptions in 2011. Those struggles contributed to Frazier's decision to dismiss defensive line coach Karl Dunbar and demote defensive coordinator Fred Pagac to linebackers coach.

But with defensive end Jared Allen's league-leading 22 sacks, a late resurgence by defensive tackle Kevin Williams and an established outside linebacker in Chad Greenway, there is some talent there.

"Any time you get a chance to come in with a lot of the building blocks already in place, you want to jump at that," Williams said on a conference call.

The 42-year-old Williams, a college teammate of former Vikings defensive coordinator and current Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, was chosen after Jacksonville defensive coordinator Mel Tucker decided to stay with the Jaguars. 

Frazier said he also spoke with fired St. Louis coach Steve Spagnuolo, who later agreed to become the Saints' defensive coordinator, but the timing wasn't right.

"We were fortunate that Alan was available," Frazier said, adding: "I was a little nervous that we might not be able to get the guy I thought would be able to help us."

Brendan Daly, an assistant defensive line coach for the Vikings from 2006-08 who joined Spagnuolo's staff with the Rams in 2009, was hired by Frazier to replace Dunbar as the defensive line coach. Mike Singletary will remain an assistant head coach and a linebackers coach. Neither Frazier nor Williams said they were sure yet how Pagac's and Singletary's duties would be divided.

Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press

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