Cornerback Antoine Winfield said his neck is feeling much better, but he's being careful not to rush back from an injury that he said was more serious than has been portrayed.

Talking to reporters for the first time since injuring his neck at Kansas City on Oct. 2, Winfield wouldn't give specifics about the injury, but said it's "definitely more than a strain." He said he wants to play but won't rush back with a neck injury.

Winfield said he had an MRI on Thursday and "everything is clear." He practiced on a limited basis today and said tomorrow's full-padded practice will be the true test to determine whether his neck will allow him to play on Sunday at Carolina.

"I'm excited about it to see where I'm at," he said about Thursday's practice. "It's been 3 1/2 weeks. It's getting a lot better. I have my full range of motion. I'm heading in the right direction."

The Vikings listed 12 players on their injury report. Five did not practice: WR Percy Harvin (ribs), RG Anthony Herrera (knee), RB Adrian Peterson (ankle), TE Visanthe Shiancoe (foot) and LB Erin Henderson (personal reasons). Four were limited: NT Remi Ayodele (ankle), LB E.J. Henderson (knee), DE Brian Robison (shoulder) and Winfield (neck). Three had full participation in practice: FS Husain Abdullah (concussion), strong safety Jamarca Sanford (concussion) and center John Sullivan (concussion).


Rookies Butch Lewis, a guard from Southern Cal, and Kerry Taylor, a receiver from Arizona State, were signed to the practice squad.

The fallout from the kick heard ’round the league continues. Defensive end Brian Robison has been fined $20,000 for his kick to the, um, midsection of Packers offensive lineman T.J. Lang.

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Robison fined $20,000 for unfancy footwork