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 Pro Bowl fullback Jerome Felton likely to miss rest of preseason after surgery

Posted by: Updated: August 14, 2013 - 9:27 PM

Vikings Pro Bowler Jerome Felton will likely miss the rest of the preseason after undergoing an emergency appendectomy on Wednesday afternoon.

The veteran fullback attended the team's morning walk-through on the final full day of training camp but was then absent from the afternoon practice. It turns out Felton was rushed back to the Twin Cities for surgery to remove his appendix.

The Vikings confirmed the surgery, which was first reported by the Star Tribune, via Twitter, and shortly afterward Felton (@jfelton45) tweeted: Thanks for the well wishes everybody, I'll b fine, surgery went great and I'll b out there soon! #SkolVikings

The timeline for Felton's recovery should be somewhere in the ballpark of two weeks. But it's almost certain the team will keep Felton out of game action until the regular season opens Sept. 8 in Detroit.

The Vikings will play their second preseason game Friday night in Buffalo against the Bills and follow nine days later with an NBC-televised "Football Night in America" contest at San Francisco. The preseason finale will be Aug. 29 at Mall of America Field against Tennessee. But significant starters, even if fully healthy, aren't expected to play in that contest.

Felton enjoyed a major breakthrough in his first season with the Vikings last season, using his toughness and tenacity as Adrian Peterson's lead blocker to earn a Pro Bowl invitation. Peterson rushed for 2,097 yards on his way to MVP honors and has said that Felton's efforts blocking in front of him may have been "worth 600-700 yards over the course of the season. Maybe more than that."

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