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.


Vikings still deciding Brinkley's IR fate

Posted by: Mark Craig under Vikings, Leslie Frazier, Vikings defense, E.J. Henderson, Leslie Frazier, Sidney Rice Updated: August 31, 2011 - 8:01 PM

UPDATE: Coach Leslie Frazier has confirmed tonight that Brinkley did have hip surgery on Tuesday. Frazier will update Brinkley's situation on Thursday night, but Brinkley is expected to be moved to season-ending injured reserve.

With the final roster cuts not coming until Saturday, the Vikings have some time to figure out what to do with backup middle linebacker Jasper Brinkley. Brinkley had hip surgery and could be sidelined until late in the season.

A year ago, Sidney Rice had similar hip surgery and stayed on the active roster so he could return later in the season. But  considering Brinkley's backup status and the fact he was a valuable special teams player, he's likely to end up on injured reserve instead.

The Vikings are so thin at the position, they had to go with David Herron as the No. 2 MLB behind E.J. Henderson in Saturday night's preseason game. Herron entered with the second unit at the start of the second half against the Cowboys. He finished with six tackles. He sort of looked like a guy who had signed with the team a day earlier. But at least he is familiar with the defense having played in it in 2007 and 2008.

The Vikings might decide to bring in another middle linebacker, but chances are Herron was the guy they've tabbed to back up Henderson. If Henderson stays healthy, it's not an issue because he rarely leaves the field.

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