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.


Former Vikings linebacker Herron rejoins team

Posted by: Mark Craig under Vikings, Brad Childress, Vikings defense, Brad Childress, Heath Farwell Updated: August 26, 2011 - 12:29 PM

The Vikings have signed linebacker David Herron and released linebacker Mark Washington, who was out this week with a shoulder injury.

If Herron's name rings a bell, that's because he was a pawn in the early stages of the feud between former Vikings coach Brad Childress and Patriots coach Bill Belichick.

In 2007, the Vikings signed Herron as an undrafted rookie. When teams began cutting players, the Vikings decided to put in a claim for Patriots tight end Garrett Mills. Childress not only claimed Mills, he then went public with details on how Belichick called and tried to get him not to claim Mills so that the Patriots could add Mills to their practice squad.

Childress said Belichick offered to not claim a released Vikings player if Childress agreed. Childress declined the offer, so Belichick claimed Herron.

"Belichick didn't really care for that," Childress said at the time. "He was trying to leverage, but you always find out who is honest and straightforward."

The Patriots ended up releasing Herron, who ended up back with the Vikings in 2007-08. Herron also was with the Chiefs in 2009, the Chargers in 2010 and the Jets earlier this offseason. Mills never made a significan contribution to the Vikings, but the relationship between Childress and Belichick remained frosty, at best.

Belichick, of course, got the last laugh. He traded Randy Moss to the Vikings for a third-round draft pick during the 2010 season. Moss ended up being released 26 days later in a move that played a major role in Childress' firing.

Herron gives the Vikings some depth at an injury-depleted postion. Heath Farwell (hamstring), rookie Ross Homan (concussion) and Jasper Brinkley (hip) all missed practices this week.

Raiders sign Sheppard: Former Viking Lito Sheppard was signed by the Raiders today. Sheppard, 30, played in 13 games with two starts for the Vikings a year ago.

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