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.


Chris Cook will play Sunday in Houston

Posted by: under Vikings, Leslie Frazier, Leslie Frazier Updated: December 21, 2012 - 1:51 PM

Vikings cornerback Chris Cook will officially be activated off injured reserve by Saturday and will play in Houston this weekend after missing six games with a broken bone in his right arm. Cook should start, but may cede reps to A.J. Jefferson, who has played in his place since Week 9 in Seattle.

“He’s far enough along that we’re going to for sure play him,” head coach Leslie Frazier said. “It’s just a matter of how much.”

The Vikings have until Saturday to clear a roster spot for Cook, a minor transaction that will be completed soon.

Cook missed 10 games due to injury as a rookie in 2010 and was then exiled from the team for the final 10 games of 2011 as he dealt with off-the-field issues. He was charged with felony domestic assault following an altercation with his girlfriend in October 2011 but was later acquitted.

After this year’s broken arm provided another significant setback, Cook now has 20 games played and 26 missed in his three NFL seasons.

“He’s got the ability to be a good corner in our league,” Frazier said. “But because of the injuries, it’s set him back some. But they’ve been legitimate injuries – and what he went through a season ago as well …

Having a chance to finish this season, Frazier believes, will help the 25-year-old cornerback’s growth.

“I think it’s huge for his development,” Frazier said. “Coming back and hopefully lining up against the caliber of offense and the caliber of receivers he will [Sunday], it will be a big challenge for him. The downside is he hasn’t had much build-up to line up against guys who have been playing week in and week out. So you have to take his play a little bit with a grain of salt and the fact that he’s coming off an injury where he’s not sure about contact.”

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