Vikings' Raymond close to returning

  • Article by: KENT YOUNGBLOOD and DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune staff writers
  • Updated: October 30, 2012 - 12:48 AM
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Vikings safety Mistral Raymond was carted off the field in the second quarter of the 49ers game after dislocating his right ankle.

Photo: Jeff Wheeler, Star Tribune file

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Mistral Raymond could return to action this Sunday in Seattle. The Vikings' second-year safety has missed the past 5 1/2 games after dislocating his right ankle in a Sept. 23 victory over San Francisco.

Raymond has been back practicing the past two weeks, participating mostly in individual work. This week, he will be integrated back into full-team activities, with the Vikings medical staff and coach Leslie Frazier closely monitoring his recovery.

"I'm available," Raymond said. "But, to what extent they want to use me, what role they'll have me in, that's totally up to the coaching staff."

Said Frazier: "We need to get him through an entire week of practice. We're going to give him a little bit more this week and then we'll make a decision later in the week. But all indications are that he's improved enough where he can go through everything in practice."

Frazier was noncommittal on whether Raymond would immediately return to the starting lineup, replacing Jamarca Sanford, if he was cleared to play. But Frazier has said in recent weeks that Raymond would become a starter again once he's 100 percent.

Wilson next

Vikings defensive end Brian Robison gave Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson an enormous compliment Monday. Robison described Wilson -- the rookie out of Wisconsin -- as a combination of fellow rookies Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck.

The Vikings will be facing their third heralded rookie quarterback of the season when they travel to Seattle for Sunday's game. And the first two -- against Luck in Indianapolis Week 2 and against Griffin in Washington Week 6 -- were both losses.

"It's just the things [Wilson] can do with his legs and his arms," Robison said. "Just his smarts. He's always looking downfield for guys. That's what he wants to do, make plays in the passing game. But if he has to tuck it and run, he has the wheels to do it."

Wilson, a third-round pick, has passed for 1,466 yards and 10 touchdowns, has eight interceptions, and has run 36 times for 128 yards.

"It seems we keep playing these rookie quarterbacks who can make plays," Robison said. "We have to make sure that what has happened with the last two doesn't happen with this one."

Getting closer?

Rookie receiver Jarius Wright said he wakes up every week wondering if he will make his NFL regular-season debut.

So far it hasn't happened.

The fourth-round pick out of Arkansas, who spent some extra time after Monday's workout practicing his routes, keeps working and waiting.

"In case my number is called I want to be ready to go," he said.

So when will that debut come?

"I think he has to continue to improve and keep working hard like he's doing in practice," Frazier said. "I don't know that there's anything more he has to do. But he's improving, and he's come a long way."

Etc.

• Receiver Michael Jenkins missed Monday's practice, but indicated on Twitter he was with his family following the death of a grandmother. Tight end John Carlson also sat out the practice, still yet to be cleared after suffering a concussion eight days ago against Arizona.

• Cornerback Chris Cook had successful surgery on his broken arm. The Vikings plan to fill his roster spot sometime this week.

• Cornerback A.J. Jefferson, acquired in an Aug. 31 trade from Arizona, has adjusted to what the Vikings do on defense -- namely, run a lot more Cover 2.

"It's a complete turnaround," said Jefferson, who will get more playing time because of Cook's injury. "Everybody knows we're a Cover 2 team. In Arizona we played a lot more man-to-man. But it's still football. I've been doing it a long time."

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