Another day, another Vikings starter has fallen and won’t get up in time for Sunday’s game at Carolina.
Defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd underwent arthroscopic surgery to clean damaged cartilage from his right knee, coach Mike Zimmer revealed after Thursday’s practice.
Floyd had the same procedure done on his left knee last October and missed four games.
Asked what kind of impact the injury-prone Floyd’s latest setback will have on the Vikings’ fifth-ranked scoring defense, Zimmer said: “We feel good about the guys we have. He’s played, what, 12 plays this year? He hasn’t played. Kind of out of sight out of mind.”
Floyd actually played 23 snaps in the season opener. But he hasn’t played or practiced since.
As a first-round draft pick in 2013, Floyd’s fifth-year option was exercised by the Vikings this spring. He’s under contract through 2017 and needs to have a productive season to earn the kind of long-term deal the team typically works out with core players before they enter their final season under contract.
Peterson has surgery; no additional injuries
Meanwhile, running back Adrian Peterson had his knee surgery Thursday morning. Afterward, the Vikings issued a statement saying the lateral meniscus repair to Peterson’s right knee was performed successfully at Twin Cities Orthopedics by team doctor Chris Larson.
The team also announced that “there were no additional injuries or issues noted in or surrounding the knee joint during the surgical procedure.”
Asked after practice if Peterson’s return would take months instead of weeks, Zimmer said: “I would guess, yeah. I don’t know. I’m not a doctor.”
Rhodes limited, but practices again
Cornerback Xavier Rhodes was limited again in Thursday’s practice, but that’s a good thing. It means the injured knee that kept him out of the first two games responded well overnight to the work Rhodes put in during Wednesday’s practice. Barring a setback, Rhodes should play.
The same goes for tight end MyCole Pruitt, who also missed the first two games because of a knee injury and also was limited in practice the past two days.
Meanwhile, defensive end Danielle Hunter (knee), linebacker Eric Kendricks (ankle) and tight end Kyle Rudolph (groin) were bumped up to full participation in Thursday’s practice. All three were limited Wednesday.
Turner has faced worse situations
Throw a personnel pothole at Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner and chances are he’s already experienced something similar or even more challenging during his 32-year NFL career.
Take, for instance, the challenge of preparing Sunday’s game plan for Carolina without Peterson and left tackle Matt Kalil, who was placed on injured reserve Wednesday.
Turner, of course, knows all about losing Peterson, having lost him for the last 15 games of the 2014 season. As for losing the team’s starting left tackle the past 66 games, it will be a struggle with second-year pro T.J. Clemmings, a former right tackle, having never started a regular-season game at left tackle.
But, as Turner noted Thursday, at least Clemmings has been practicing with the Vikings at left tackle since the start of training camp and did fill Kalil’s spot with the first team during two preseason games.
It could be worse. Right, Norv?
“I remember we played the Steelers [in 2012],” said Turner, referring to his time as head coach in San Diego. “I think it was my last year [in San Diego]. We signed two tackles on Tuesday night and both started on Sunday because we were banged up there.”
Turner and General Manager A.J. Smith promoted Kevin Haslam from the practice squad. Then they signed 10-year veteran Reggie Wells off the street. Haslam started at left tackle, while Wells started at right tackle.
Haslam played only three more games as a Charger. Wells played only one more week.
“They were veteran guys and we actually won the game [34-24],” Turner said. “That story had a happy ending.”