Still “baffled” by the inconsistency with which NFL replay officials review pass interference, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer sounds as if he’s rooting for this to be a one-and-done season for the new rule.
“There’s a bunch of them they didn’t overturn, and now they’re starting to overturn some,” Zimmer said. “It’s very ambiguous to the players and the coaches. It was voted in for one year, so hopefully they either fix it or get rid of it because it is not the way it was intended to be in my understanding from being in the meetings.”
Zimmer started to go on, saying, “It’s like …” before pausing.
“I better stop there,” he said.
Only he didn’t. He circled back to Week 2 and the Dalvin Cook controversy at Green Bay. The Vikings had a 3-yard touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs nullified when pass interference on Cook was added during the replay review that follows all scoring plays.
“The pass interference in Green Bay that we got called on that kept us from scoring a touchdown, I think there’s been way less … the ones I’ve seen, that one has me baffled,” Zimmer said. “Let’s say that.”
Three-peat Payton nominee
Nine players have won Vikings Community Man of the Year since 1996, when the team began giving the award to its annual nominee for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award.
With a third straight win and nomination for the prestigious league award, tight end Kyle Rudolph joined Matt Birk (eight straight), Hall of Famer Cris Carter (four in a row) and Chad Greenway (four, including three straight) as the only players to manage the feat three times.
“It’s a great honor,” Rudolph said. “We were at the [University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital] on Tuesday, and I spoke upon the fact that so many guys in our locker room are deserving of this nomination. There are guys that do great work both here in the Twin Cities community and back home, where they went to school.
“So, to be able to represent this team for the third year in a row is really special. My wife [Jordan] and I are extremely humbled and honored by that opportunity.”
The Vikings have had two players — Carter in 1999 and Madieu Williams in 2010 — win Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year. Birk won it in 2011 as a Baltimore Raven.
“I actually talked to CC [Carter] a little bit last year when there was a chance I could win,” Rudolph said. “He always told me, ‘I hope you have a trophy like mine to put right next to it because you deserve it.’ As another guy who is from southwest Ohio, like Cris, it would be a great honor to be recognized alongside him.”
Mattison sits again
Running back Alexander Mattison (ankle) missed his second straight practice and is looking unlikely to play Sunday at the Chargers. Meanwhile, backup defensive back Jayron Kearse (toe) was added to the injury report as not practicing on Thursday.
Receiver Bisi Johnson (quad) also was added to the report but was limited. And nose tackle Linval Joseph (knee) had full participation after being limited Wednesday.
Limited again Thursday were receiver Adam Thielen (hamstring) and cornerbacks Xavier Rhodes (ankle) and Mike Hughes (hip).
If Mattison is unable to back up Cook, the Vikings would lean more on Mike Boone, a second-year player.
“I think Mike has had a really good year going back to training camp,” offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski said. “I think he’s worked very hard. Maybe no player has come as far as he has. I think credit to the kid. Credit to [running backs coach] Kennedy Polamalu on bringing him along.”