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.


The Winfield plan

Posted by: under Brad Childress, Vikings defense, Antoine Winfield, Brad Childress Updated: January 15, 2010 - 4:24 PM

Antoine Winfield and coach Brad Childress both said the plan is for the veteran to get some snaps Sunday against Dallas at his normal left corner spot and also for him to move inside to play in the nickel defense.

How much Winfield ends up playing on the outside remains to be seen and honestly this could be a smoke screen to throw off the Cowboys. (In other words, I have no doubt Winfield is going to play in this game but would not be shocked if his reps were limited.)

After struggling the previous two weeks against Chicago and Carolina, Winfield played exclusively on the inside (about 20 snaps) in the regular-season finale against the Giants two weeks ago in order to give his injured right foot some rest. He then received treatment on the foot before heading to Houston last weekend to spend time with his family.

Asked what would be an ideal number of snaps on Sunday, Winfield said: "It’s really hard to tell. With how big this game is, I plan on playing every snap. I don’t want to come out."
 
Winfield, though, said "he’s definitely going to be smart about" not pushing himself. "If I feel anything, I will definitely come out," he said. Benny Sapp will see playing time at the left corner Sunday and will play in the slot if Winfield is moved outside in the nickel.
 
Sapp said he had no idea how the playing time would end up being divided but made it clear that did not bother him at all.

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