Frazier not ruling Winfield out
- Blog Post by: Mark Craig
- October 6, 2011 - 3:58 PM
Antoine Winfield missed his second consecutive day of practice, but Vikings coach Leslie Frazier has not ruled the starting left cornerback out of Sunday's game against the Cardinals.
"We'll know more [Friday] where he stands," Frazier said after today's practice. "He didn't do anything today. We're going to try and see if he can go tomorrow. If not, it'll probably become a game-time decision."
Winfield got hurt making a tackle in Sunday's game against the Chiefs.
"He came in Monday pretty stiff in the neck, so we did an MRI and things turned out to be fine there," Frazier said. "But there is something that's creating a stiffness in his neck, and anytime you deal with necks, of course, you're very cautious. He's getting a little bit better, so we'll just see how he is tomorrow."
Frazier said there is nothing stucturally wrong with the neck or the spinal cord. He said it would be accurate to call the injury muscular in nature. In other words, it's a muscle strain.
"Everything I've been told, it's soreness and stiffness," Frazier said. "It should dissipate over time."
Frazier also said it's not expected to be a long-term injury, but the team is still being very careful.
"Until he feels comfortable to say, `You know what, I'm ready to get out there and try it, nobody is going to urge him to do anything more than he's comfortable doing," Frazier said.
If Winfield can't play, the Vikings will start nickel back Chris Cook at left corner, where he plays in the nickel. Asher Allen would then be the nickel back.
"[Allen] has had a good two days of practice," Frazier said. "He's practicing as if he's going to play. That's the right attitude to take because it might end up being that way."
Other injury news, center John Sullivan (ankle) practiced, while punter Chris Kluwe (hamstring) did not. Injury report below.
Frazier said the plan is to have Kluwe punt on Friday. If he's unable to do that, "then we have to start looking at our alternatives," Frazier said. Frazier said former Lions punter Nick Harris, who worked out for the team on Wednesday, is on a "list of guys" the Vikings are looking at.
Here's the injury report: Kluwe and Winfield did not practice. Sullivan was limited. Also limited were LB E.J. Henderson (knee), S Husain Abdullah (pelvis), Charlie Johnson (elbow) and S Jamarca Sanford (knee). Not practicing for the Cardinals today were: P Dave Zastudil (knee), TD Jim Dray (pectoral) and TE Todd Heap (hamstring).
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