Vikings' Abdullah cleared to return despite concussion worries

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 24, 2012 - 6:25 AM

Vikings safety Husain Abdullah received some encouraging news late last week, as he was cleared by medical specialists to continue playing football, even after suffering four concussions in the past two seasons.

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Vikings safety Husain Abdullah received some encouraging news late last week, as he was cleared by medical specialists to continue playing football, even after suffering four concussions in the past two seasons.

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MOBILE, ALA. - Vikings safety Husain Abdullah received some encouraging news late last week, as he was cleared by medical specialists to continue playing football, even after suffering four concussions in the past two seasons.

Abdullah missed the final five games this past season and ended the year on injured reserve after suffering his second concussion of 2011.

He said at season's end he was worried about the long-term ramifications of his recurring head injuries. But his recent trip to see doctors in Pittsburgh provided encouraging results.

"That's good," Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said Monday. "I know [his health] was a concern for all of us. ... He's a good player, and he's played well for us."

But will Abdullah continue playing for the Vikings? He's set to become a free agent in March. The Vikings have praised his intelligence and consistency in the past, but Frazier said Monday that Abdullah's recent history of concussions would have to be taken into consideration as the team assesses re-signing him.

"In today's NFL, it's a factor," Frazier said. "You can't ignore concussions anymore. It's rare now that a guy get a concussion and doesn't miss a game, it seems. So you have to consider that part of a player's history today. That's just a fact."

Evaluation time

At this week's Senior Bowl, Frazier and his assistants have continued reminding players of what the Vikings coaches are looking for as they assess the NFL potential of prospects here. Frazier has asked players to show constant effort, attention to detail and to prove their worth as good teammates.

After Monday's practice, Frazier was asked if he was already trying to identify players who would fit into the Vikings' specific schemes.

"You're always looking for football instincts and ability," he said. "And you believe that you can fit the scheme to them if they have what it takes from a speed, skill, character standpoint. You'll fit those guys in whatever you're doing. So talent. We're looking for talent."

Davidson on the mend

Vikings offensive line coach Jeff Davidson is the only member of Frazier's staff not with the team this week. Davidson underwent hip replacement surgery Friday. And Frazier said there was no push to have Davidson delay that operation to participate in Senior Bowl activities.

Instead, Davidson now has a chance to recover quicker and should be at the NFL combine next month. Once he is cleared to resume flying, he will also have the opportunity to travel around to work offensive line prospects out.

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