Concussion causes Henderson to sit out

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 20, 2012 - 8:20 PM

The Vikings defense will need to be sharp against a 49ers offense that almost never shoots itself in the foot. That's why linebacker Erin Henderson's absence from Thursday's practice because of a concussion suddenly takes on such great significance.

San Francisco averages an NFL-best 167 rushing yards per game. The 49ers also have one of the league's premier tight ends in Vernon Davis, who has eight catches for 116 yards and three touchdowns. Translation: The Vikings will need a big day from their linebacking corps, which now might not be at full strength.

Henderson took a blow to the head late in last week's loss at Indianapolis, left the game briefly but returned. He wasn't formally diagnosed with a concussion until Wednesday, according to Vikings coach Leslie Frazier.

"There were no indications after the game, Monday, Tuesday," Frazier said. "And then Wednesday, he came after practice and just didn't feel right. So that's when they decided to take him through the protocol for concussions."

It's too early to know whether Henderson will be cleared to play Sunday against San Francisco. If he can't, Marvin Mitchell would take his starting spot at weak-side linebacker while Jasper Brinkley would inherit Henderson's snaps in nickel looks.

Henderson's status might not be as worrisome as the fact that his concussion wasn't diagnosed until midweek.

"I don't recall them telling me at all during the game that he had concussion symptoms," Frazier said.

Big plays, big mistakes

The three longest plays surrendered by the Vikings defense in the opening two games have been the result of basic execution letdowns.

On Jacksonville's go-ahead 39-yard touchdown with 20 seconds left, cornerback Chris Cook erred in letting Cecil Shorts get behind him. In the first quarter last week, Antoine Winfield stumbled with the ball in the air, misjudged Andrew Luck's deep throw and was easily beaten for a 41-yard reception by Donnie Avery. And then there was Reggie Wayne's 30-yard touchdown grab with 7 seconds left before halftime in which Henderson didn't drop deep enough and safety Mistral Raymond was late converging.

"Any way [it goes], you don't want it to happen. But I think it's just understanding the situation that we're in during the ballgame," defensive coordinator Alan Williams said. "We've said that we want to be situational smart football players, and I think that's taking time -- more time than we would like."

Etc.

• Special teams coordinator Mike Priefer still questions whether safety Andrew Sendejo roughed Indianapolis punter Pat McAfee in the third quarter on what turned out to be a costly 15-yard penalty. "I think it's still a gray area and it's a difficult play to call," Priefer said.

• Suspended Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson won't be back for another week, but it's possible rookie Jarius Wright could provide the offense with some pop, now that he's ready to make his NFL debut after missing the first two games because of a sprained ankle. Wright's last action came in the preseason finale in Houston, where he had six catches for 122 yards, including a 59-yard touchdown.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Cincinnati - WP: J. Cueto 4 FINAL
Pittsburgh - LP: E. Volquez 1
LA Angels - WP: T. Skaggs 7 FINAL
Washington - LP: T. Jordan 2
Kansas City - WP: J. Shields 8 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: D. Salazar 2
Baltimore - LP: E. Meek 3 FINAL
Toronto - WP: S. Delabar 9
Chicago WSox - LP: C. Leesman 6 FINAL
Detroit - WP: J. Verlander 8
St. Louis - WP: A. Wainwright 3 FINAL
NY Mets - LP: D. Gee 0
Miami - WP: J. Fernandez 1 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: A. Wood 0
Minnesota - LP: K. Gibson 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: D. Price 7
NY Yankees - WP: M. Tanaka 9 FINAL
Boston - LP: J. Lester 3
Arizona - LP: B. McCarthy 2 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Hammel 9
San Diego - WP: D. Roach 2 FINAL
Milwaukee - LP: A. Figaro 1
San Francisco - LP: M. Bumgarner 1 FINAL
Colorado - WP: F. Morales 2
Texas - WP: A. Ogando 5 FINAL
Oakland - LP: L. Gregerson 4
Houston - WP: C. McHugh 5 FINAL
Seattle - LP: E. Ramirez 2
Philadelphia - WP: A. Bastardo 3 FINAL
Los Angeles - LP: J. Howell 2
Atlanta 85 FINAL
Indiana 101
Brooklyn 95 FINAL
Toronto 100
Washington 101 FINAL
Chicago 99
Tampa Bay 3 FINAL
Montreal 4
Boston 3 FINAL
Detroit 0
NY Rangers 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 1
San Jose 4 FINAL(OT)
Los Angeles 3
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2013 preseason     
Aug 9 - vs. Houston 7 pmX27-13
Aug 16 - at Buffalo 6 pmX20-16
Aug 25 - at San Francisco 7 pmX34-14
Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee 7 pmX24-23
2013 regular season     
Sep 8 - at Detroit NoonX34-24
Sep 15 - at Chicago NoonX31-30
Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland NoonX31-27
Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London) NoonX34-27
Oct 6 - Bye
Oct 13 - vs. Carolina NoonX35-10
Oct 21 - at. NY Giants 7:40 pmX23-7
Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay 7:30 pmX44-31
Nov 3 - at Dallas NoonX27-23
Nov 7 - vs. Washington 7:25 pmX34-27
Nov 17 - at Seattle 3:25 pmX41-20
Nov. 24 - at Green Bay Noon26-26
Dec 1 - vs. Chicago NoonX23-20
Dec 8 - at Baltimore NoonX29-26
Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia NoonX48-30
Dec 22 - at Cincinnati NoonX42-14
Dec 29 - vs. Detroit NoonX14-13

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which quarterback is best in the NFL draft?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close