Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Secondary depth becomes concern as London trip begins

Posted by: Chip Scoggins Updated: September 24, 2013 - 10:49 AM

LONDON -- Hello from London where Mark Craig and I arrived this afternoon.

Our colleague Jim Souhan attended a welcome function for the Vikings this morning after they arrived following an overnight flight. Souhan reports that Coach Leslie Frazier said three defensive backs -- Chris Cook, Jamarca Sanford and A.J. Jefferson will not practice Wednesday as the team begins preparations for Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Wembley Stadium.

This will be a important story line to follow all week because the Vikings depth is stretched thin with these injuries. Cook suffered a groin injury in the first quarter of Sunday's loss to the Browns. Sanford injured a hamstring and Jefferson is dealing with an ankle injury.

All three players had MRIs before leaving for London. The team obviously will be cautious with these players because those injuries can linger all season if a player rushes back too soon.

A depleted secondary could put the Vikings in a tough spot because the Steelers rank 10th in the NFL in passing offense and only 31st in rushing offense.

The Vikings practice at a field near their team hotel on Wednesday and Thursday. We'll have early updates all week along with videos and lots of other related content.

Also, I'm hosting a live chat today (Tuesday) at Startribune.com starting at noon central. Hope you join me.

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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
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Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
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Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
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Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
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