How Lovie Smith Managed to Avoid Firing and Brad Childress Didn't - NBC Chicago
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How Lovie Smith Managed to Avoid Firing and Brad Childress Didn't



    At the outset of the football season, it was supposed to be Lovie Smith on the hot seat.

    Now the Bears coach looks safe from the firing line that just struck down Vikings head coach Brad Childress.

    Vikings owner Zygi Wilf ended a drama filled season that has dragged his team to the ground.

    Former Bear Leslie Frazier will now coach Minnesota as they try to dig out from a 3-7 hole that hit its low point as the Vikings lost to the Packers 31-3 on Sunday.

    At 3-7, it's doubtful that the even with a new coach, the Vikings will make much noise. They need to win every game through the end of the season plus get some help from the Bears and Packers to even make the playoffs.

    As the season began, it looked like the Vikes were the best team in the NFC North. With Brett Favre back for one more go, Adrian Peterson running the ball and Jared Allen leading the defense, it looked as if the Packers and Vikings would battle for the playoff spot, and the Bears could only hope to get in the fight. 

    But Smith did most things right while Childress did everything wrong. He traded for and then cut Randy Moss, he argued with his players and then, most unforgivably, he let his team be wrecked by the Packers. Smith did what any embattled coach needs to do: win. He didn't embarrass his boss or get in public spats with his players. Instead, Smith has helped his team win.

    He's not perfect, but thankfully, he's not Childress.