Griffin shows skill quickly, briefly

  • Article by: JUDD ZULGAD , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 21, 2011 - 12:40 AM

Cedric Griffin made his return from a second anterior cruciate tear in as many years on Saturday, and it didn't take the starting right cornerback much time to get involved.

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Vikings cornerback Cedric Griffin

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SEATTLE - Cedric Griffin made his return from a second anterior cruciate tear in as many years on Saturday, and it didn't take the starting right cornerback much time to get involved.

On the first play from scrimmage of the Vikings' preseason game against the Seahawks at Century LinkField, Griffin broke up a pass that was intended for wide receiver Golden Tate. Griffin played the first series and then left the game. He was replaced by rookie Brandon Burton.

Coach Leslie Frazier had said he wanted to get Griffin one series.

Griffin tore the ACL in his right knee last Oct. 11 against the New York Jets. That came after Griffin tore his left ACL in the NFC Championship Game the previous season.

The Vikings thought Griffin would need to be eased into training camp, but he quickly showed he was able to do all drills. Frazier held Griffin out of the exhibition opener last Saturday at Tennessee just to be cautious.

The Vikings' scratches Saturday included wide receivers Percy Harvin (ribs) and Greg Camarillo (groin), cornerback Asher Allen (toe), defensive back Simeon Castille (hamstring), fullback Matt Asiata (hip flexor), linebackers Kenny Onatolu (foot) and Heath Farwell (hamstring), guard Anthony Herrera (knee), tight end Visanthe Shiancoe (hamstring) and defensive end D'Aundre Reed (calf strain).

Herrera was activated from the physically-unable-to-perform list last week and took part in portions of practice, but the decision was made to hold him out at least another week. Herrera suffered a torn left ACL last Nov. 21 at Green Bay.

Etc.

• Erin Henderson started the game at weak-side linebacker and is expected to win the job, but Jasper Brinkley replaced him with several members of the first team still on the field for the second series the Vikings were on the field on defense.

Brinkley is the primary backup to E.J. Henderson at middle linebacker, but Frazier has wanted to give the third-year player a chance to show what he can do on the weak side.

• Herrera's absence resulted in Scott Kooistra getting the start at right guard. He worked at the position last week, but Frazier made it clear he felt Kooistra was a tackle. Kooistra got the start over Ryan Cook and Chris DeGeare, who started the preseason opener at left guard but played right tackle in practice last week.

• A week after Jamarca Sanford started at strong safety for the Vikings, Tyrell Johnson got the nod at the same position as those two continue to battle for the job.

• The Vikings elected not to play defensive tackle Kevin Williams, end Jared Allen or cornerback Antoine Winfield in the preseason opener even though all three were healthy. Saturday, however, all three were on the field to open the game. Winfield was removed after one series as Chris Cook came in.

• Rookie safety Mistral Raymond saw his first playing time of the preseason with the second team after missing the preseason opener because of a hamstring injury.

• Vikings linebacker Mark Washington was injured on the opening kickoff of the second half but was able to walk off under his own power.

• Vikings wide receiver Emmanuel Arceneaux, who is competing to make the team, didn't help his cause in the fourth quarter. He caught a 23-yard pass from Joe Webb, but it was punched out of his possession at the 2-yard line. The ball went out of the end zone and was ruled a touchback.

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