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.


Henderson makes it through entire practice

Posted by: Mark Craig under NFC, Leslie Frazier, Jared Allen, Leslie Frazier Updated: October 4, 2012 - 3:33 PM

Weak-side linebacker Erin Henderson, who missed the past two games because of a concussion, made it through the entire practice today, coach Leslie Frazier said after practice.

"We're optimistic about him playing in this ballgame," said Frazier, referring to Sunday's game against the Titans at the Metrodome. "We'll see how he does tomorrow when he wakes up to make sure he's still fine."

Frazier also added that Henderson won't step back into his role as middle linebacker in the nickel defense. Jasper Brinkley, the middle linebacker in the base defense, will continue in that role after playing it well in Henderson's absence.

Frazier said coaches will re-evaluate Henderson's role in the nickel once he's had a chance to get back up to game speed.

Meanwhile, Henderson's backup, Marvin Mitchell, strained a calf during special teams drills and will be sent for a magnetic resonance imaging exam.

If, for some reason, neither Henderson nor Mitchell can play, Frazier said either Tyrone McKenzie or rookie Audie Cole would have to start.

In other injury news:

  • DE Jared Allen missed practice, but is expected to return on Friday. Frazier doesn't expect him to miss Sunday's game.
  • WR Michael Jenkins (ribs) was limited today after missing Wednesday's practice.
  •  QB Christian Ponder (knee) was fine and had "a good practice," according to Frazier.
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