Notebook: Vikings sign TE Sperry

Veteran TE Kory Sperry will join a group of tight ends fighting for a roster spot behind starter Kyle Rudolph.

Robert Stanton/Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

MANKATO, Minn. — Two days after opening the preseason, the Minnesota Vikings added to their tight end group on Sunday.

Minnesota signed tight end Kory Sperry, a six-year NFL veteran who walked in during the team’s afternoon practice indoors on Sunday. The Vikings moved the afternoon practice into the fieldhouse at Minnesota State University after rain and lightning forced the team off the outdoor fields about an hour into practice.

Sperry, 29, spent last season with the Arizona Cardinals, catching one pass for 16 yards in eight games and two starts. Sperry played for Minnesota offensive coordinator Norv Turner from 2010-12 when Turner was the San Diego Chargers’ head coach, and spent time on San Diego’s practice squad in 2009 under Turner.

Sperry, who’s played 40 NFL games and caught nine passes for 152 yards, was an undrafted free agent out of Colorado State in 2009 when he signed with the Chargers.

The Vikings had released undrafted rookie tight end AC Leonard last week, who had missed time in training camp with headaches.

Sperry will join a group of tight ends fighting for a roster spot behind starter Kyle Rudolph, who signed a contract extension with Minnesota two weeks ago. Rhett Ellison likely has a spot on the roster as a blocking tight end, but the team is looking for another tight end among a group that includes Sperry, Chase Ford, Mike Higgins and Allen Reisner.

Ford is on the physically unable to perform list as he recovers from surgery to repair a broken foot. He’s missed all of training camp with the injury.

Secondary still hurting: Cornerbacks Josh Robinson and Marcus Sherels were both in pads for the beginning of the Vikings’ afternoon practice on Sunday, but safeties Jamarca Sanford (back), Robert Blanton (hamstring) and Mistral Raymond (concussion) were held out.

Photos of the Week: 8/3/14-8/9/14

Sherels didn’t participate in one-on-one coverage drills before the team was forced inside. He’s been bothered by a hamstring injury and was held out of Friday’s preseason game. Robinson is also making his way back from a hamstring injury.

Safety Andrew Sendejo, who was held out of Friday’s game, was in pads and practicing Sunday as he makes his return from back and ankle injuries.

Defensive tackle Linval Joseph was held out, as expected, after being shot by an errant bullet in a Minneapolis nightclub shooting early Saturday morning. Linebacker Dom DeCicco (undisclosed) was also held out of Sunday’s practice.

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