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.


Peterson will return to practice Friday

Posted by: Mark Craig under Vikings, Super Bowl, Vikings coaches, Leslie Frazier, Adrian Peterson, Bryant McKinnie, Chad Greenway, Leslie Frazier Updated: August 3, 2011 - 5:09 PM

MANKATO -- Coach Leslie Frazier said after this afternoon's practice that running back Adrian Peterson will return to practice on Friday morning. Peterson's fiance had her baby, a boy, Monday night. Peterson missed one practice Tuesday, two today and will miss tomorrow's first full-padded practice.

Frazier also talked about the decision on Bryant McKinnie, who was released on Tuesday because of his tremendously poor conditioning level (although Frazier still won't acknowledge that as the reason).

"We made a decision for our organization that we felt was the best thing as we're trying to bring a world championship to Minnesota," Frazier said. "In order for us to do that, there are certain things I talked to our team about on that first night, the Sunday night when we got together as a group. I talked to them about the criteria and the things I thought were necessary to win in our league. In order for us to get where we need to go, there are certain things that need to happen and in Bryant's case, he's been a terrific player for the Vikings, I love him as a person, built a great relationship together, but at this point for all parties involved, I just thought it was the right thing to do. I'm sure he's going to catch on with a team and he's going to do well. He's a terrific player, but for where we are right now and where we're trying to go to, it just wasn't the right fit for the direction we want to go. But I wish him the best and I know good things will happen for him. ...Just the things that were involved didn't fit what we were trying to get done."

Frazier was asked when he knew there was going to be an issue with McKinnie.

"Probably [Aug. 27] when the guys had to come in to do the things they had to do to receive their bonuses. I had an idea," Frazier said. "I had no idea the way things were going to go, but we went through the process. Like I said, I know good things are going to happen for Bryant. Unfortunately for us and for him, it didn't work out here in Minnesota."

Frazier also voiced confidence in Charlie Johnson, who will practice for the first time on Thursday.

"Left tackle is an extremely important position in our league," Frazier said. "I know things will work out for Bryant, but we have a guy who we have high hopes for in Charlie Johnson. We'll give some other guys a chance there, but Charlie is the guy we've penciled in there. We're excited to have him. He has a Super Bowl ring, knows what it takes to win in this league. Hopefully, he'll do well."

Frazier also talked about:

  • Linebacker Kenny Onatolu having a stress fracture in his left foot. Onatolu is in a walking boot and, according to Frazier, is listed as day-to-day.
  •  Linebacker Chad Greenway's contract negotiations. Greenway, the franchise player, and the team are working on a long-term deal. Frazier said: "It doesn't seem that it's affecting him in any way. He's having a great two days of camp, so things are moving right along."
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