EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings do not necessarily have a one-size-fits-all approach to discipline within their organization, and coach Mike Zimmer says he isn't aiming for one.
Zimmer said Wednesday the team required defensive coordinator George Edwards to make a "huge monetary commitment," among other things, after he was charged with misdemeanor DWI in May. Edwards pleaded guilty to misdemeanor careless driving on Aug. 30, and the St. Paul Pioneer Press first published the news of Edwards' incident on Tuesday, the same day practice squad guard Isame Faciane was released for a misdemeanor DWI charge during the team's bye week.
The Vikings were criticized in some circles for dealing differently with their defensive coordinator than they did the guard. But Zimmer said the difference in punishment was because of how differently Edwards and Faciane handled their respective DWIs, not because of the differences in their standing within the organization.
"Every situation is different, and I don't really care about being consistent; I care about being right," Zimmer said. "When this happened with George, George was given a lot of things to do, including a huge monetary commitment that he had to make, and he fulfilled all his obligations. This last situation [with Faciane], I told the players in the meeting the day they left to make sure they stay out of trouble, do the right things. I told them again [on] the field when they left. I had the coaches text them and make sure to remind them to stay out of trouble. Then, when this did happen, on the very same day, he was told to call me twice and did not call me.
"So every situation is different, and I like Isame. If he fulfills his obligations, I'm not opposed to bringing him back, as well."
Asked if Edwards' future was in doubt beyond this season, Zimmer said, "Well, if he messes up again, his future will be [in doubt]. But right now, he's fulfilled all his commitments."
Edwards' blood alcohol content was 0.11 at the time of his arrest, over Minnesota's legal limit of 0.08. He was fined $1,000 and placed on a one-year probation after pleading guilty, and the Vikings said in a Tuesday statement that Edwards notified the organization immediately after his arrest.
Faciane, whose blood alcohol content was 0.13 when he arrested in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, last Wednesday, was charged with fourth-degree DWI, driving without a valid license and operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content over the state's legal limit.