MANKATO -- Vikings cornerback Cedric Griffin will not play in the Sept. 9 regular-season opener at New Orleans, according to defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier.
This doesn't come as a surprise. Griffin suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the Vikings' loss to New Orleans in the NFC Championship Game and is currently on the physically unable to perform list. Although he could brought off the PUP at any point, the Vikings are going to be cautious.
The recovery time for an ACL injury is six to nine months and right now Griffin we are at about six months. Griffin expressed frustration that he had to sit out a couple of days ago but the last thing the Vikings want to do is rush him back and hurt the knee again.
Griffin has been watching his teammates practice and doing some running to the side during practices.
Lito Sheppard has been getting many of the first-team snaps at the right corner. Asher Allen and Benny Sapp also could compete to be the replacement. Sapp has missed the past two days of practice after getting overheated on Saturday. That has caused Allen to play inside most of the time in the nickel.
Here are some other odds and ends from today's first practice.
- Wide receiver Percy Harvin, who missed practice on Sunday because of a death in his family, was not on the field this morning. It's possible he has left the Vikings to be with his family but that's not clear at this point.
- Rookie Chris Cook, who had three interceptions in Sunday's practice, got some work with the first team at left cornerback.
- Chris DeGeare got work with the first team at left guard as Steve Hutchinson sat out during an 11-on-11 session. DeGeare is listed as a tackle on the roster but said he is focused on playing guard right now. "I see myself more as a guard since I've played it longer in my career," he said.
- Center John Sullivan sat out a second consecutive practice because of what appears to be an injury to his right calf. Sullivan is wearing a protective sleeve on his leg that has a stim pad on the calf area. Sullivan said he didn't get kicked in Saturday's practice -- that's what we thought happened -- but just said it's a little "tweak." Sullivan said he is not sure when he will return. "I'm not worried," Sullivan said. "Obviously it's not an ideal situation to be out there watching but I've been doing whatever I can to get back out there as soon as possible."
- Running back Adrian Peterson, who was held back Saturday because of what coach Brad Childress called "tightness," continues to get limited work in drills.
- Caught up with wide receiver Sidney Rice after practice. Rice said he's day-to-day with his hip injury. "It's still there the lingering pain and stuff but it's something I'll be able to work through," he said. Asked what exactly is wrong with his hip, Rice said: "I'm not going into that. It's just a hip [injury]."
- Defensive coordinator Les Frazier said that although Jamarca Sanford is getting a chance to compete for the strong safety job, Tyrell Johnson remains the starter at that position.
- A few of Joe Webb's passes in practice seem to be thrown low. "It's probably because I aim down low," he said. "If I keep my aim up high than the ball [sails]. Webb, who has been getting reps with the third team, said things are coming along "slowly but surely."
- Kicker Ryan Longwell made five of six field-goal attempts early in the practice, with the distance ranging from 25 to 50 yards. Longwell missed the 50-yarder.
- Rookie wide receiver Ray Small made a nice catch on a pass from Tarvaris Jackson in 1-on-1 drills that came against Asher Allen. The Ohio State product could have a chance to stick, especially if he emerges in the competition to be the primary punt return man.
- Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf are in town along with the rest of the ownership group for two days of meetings. The ownership group meets in Mankato each year during camp.