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Vikings receiver Jarius Wright caught this 3-yard touchdown pass against the Lions, two plays after catching first NFL pass — a 54-yarder from Christian Ponder.

Jerry Holt, Star Tribune

Wright hopes to join Harvin in lineup

  • Article by: KENT YOUNGBLOOD and DAN WIEDERER
  • Star Tribune staff writers
  • November 12, 2012 - 11:49 PM

Since being drafted in April, Jarius Wright has been described as a Percy Harvin-type receiver for a lot of reasons. He is fast. He is not particularly tall. He is primarily a slot receiver, He has a rather thick, strong build.

"Being compared to Percy Harvin doesn't bother me at all," Wright joked Monday.

But it wasn't until Harvin was hurt that Wright was finally activated for a game. And he responded, catching a 54-yard pass from Christian Ponder on the Vikings' first series Sunday. Two plays later Wright made his first career TD catch. He finished with three catches for 65 yards in a 34-24 victory over Detroit.

With Harvin (sprained ankle) expected to be healthy coming out of the bye week, the question is whether the Vikings can use him and Wright at the same time. Coach Leslie Frazier took a wait-and-see attitude.

"We always felt [Wright] had a chance to help us," Frazier said. "That was the reason we drafted him. To see him play as well as he did is great for our team, great for his confidence.

"[But] it will always be week to week with some guys. It probably won't be any different with Jarius. We'll take a look at him every week."

Wright, meanwhile, sounded confident that the team's offense has room for both him and Harvin.

"There is definitely room for me and Percy on the field at the same time," he said. "And I'm sure in the future you might get a chance to see some of that."

Wright said he has gotten the majority of his practice snaps in the slot, but said he could play outside if asked.

Carlson healthy

A knee injury kept him out of the preseason and a concussion kept him out of two regular-season games, but tight end John Carlson is healthy now. But does that mean a bigger role in the passing game? Carlson, an offseason free-agent signing, caught one pass for 11 yards Sunday and has only four receptions this season.

"Obviously, I want to contribute," he said. "I want to help the offense. Yes, I would like to be involved more. But there have been some things that have happened. I've had some setbacks to deal with over the course of the season. And the team goals always come first, whether I have 50 catches or four catches. The team goals always come first.

"Whether it's playing more and blocking in the run game or protecting in the pass game or catching more balls, I want to contribute and help the team win. But I need to continue to work and earn that right."

Etc.

• Safety Mistral Raymond said he felt 100 percent healthy in his return to action after missing six games because of an ankle injury. He was used in a rotation at the position with Jamarca Sanford. There figures to be some strong competition for playing time going forward.

"Always has been," Raymond said. "And that makes us all better."

• Frazier was complimentary of defensive tackle Fred Evans, who started in place of Letroy Guion and aided a resurgence by the run defense. Detroit rushed for only 60 yards on 17 carries, with Evans playing 59 percent of the defensive snaps and contributing three tackles, including one for loss. That said, Frazier noted that Guion will return to starting as soon as he's back to full health from the turf toe injury that sidelined him Sunday.

• The Vikings had quarterbacks coach Craig Johnson move from the press box to the sideline on Sunday to lend instruction to Christian Ponder up close. Frazier said that was a move he and offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave suggested and brought to both Ponder and Johnson.

"I think they were surprised when they were approached about this being the way we wanted to go," Frazier said. "But they were very pleased we wanted to go in this direction."

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