Sidney Rice says Vikings didn't show him the love

To hear Sidney Rice tell it, the Minnesota Vikings didn’t show much interest at all in him when free agency got rolling last month.

While that flies in the face of not only what we heard, but what was reported pretty much everywhere, it’s interesting to hear what Rice says.

The Seattle Seahawks signed Rice to a $41 million, five-year contract and he told Jeremy Fowler of the St. Paul Pioneer Press that his new team put a full-court press on him with phone calls once free agency opened. Rice tells Fowler only Vikings coach Leslier Frazier called him. Now, he’ll get to see his old team in a preseason meeting Saturday night in Seattle.

“ If you hear from them throughout the rest of the season telling you they are going to be in touch, are going to negotiate and it never happens, you've got to wonder - do they really want me there or not?" Rice said. "I just didn't feel it. It came down to Seattle showing me they wanted me to be a part of the program.”

Rice was criticized last year when he waited right before the season to undergo hip surgery, something that many believed should have been done months in advance. Without his presence, the passing game was crippled. He had a huge breakout season in 2009 playing with Brett Favre after two non-productive seasons.

Teams had to weigh what Rice they would be getting and clearly the Seahawks felt they’d be getting the ’09 version.

“I leave there with fond memories," Rice said. "I had a great time with the fans and my teammates."

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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