Status of Vikings’ Rudolph, Cassel unclear as injuries pile up
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Sunday’s devastation was much bigger than a 20-9 loss at New Orleans for the Minnesota Vikings.
Minnesota was still piecing together the damage to several injured starters a day later. Quarterback Matt Cassel has a broken foot, which opened the door for Teddy Bridgewater to get his first regular-season action on Sunday.
But tight Kyle Rudolph could be gone for several weeks after a "core" injury. Linebacker Chad Greenway has a broken rib in addition to a broken hand, and right guard Brandon Fusco is getting a second opinion on a pectoralis injury.
Coach Mike Zimmer said Rudolph, who was limited last week with an abdominal injury, was scheduled to see Dr. William Meyers in Philadelphia.
The Associated Press reported Monday evening that Rudolph is scheduled for surgery on Tuesday for a sports hernia. The AP reported Rudolph has dealt with the injury since Week 2 of the preseason and the hope is Rudolph could return for the season’s final eight games.
Meyers is a specialist in core muscle injuries who also performed groin surgery on running back Adrian Peterson in January.
Zimmer wouldn’t confirm a possible roster move for Rudolph earlier in the day.
"We’re still evaluating that," Zimmer said. "We’re talking about all those scenarios that goes on and we’ll probably, we’ll see. We’re hopeful with Kyle, so we’ll see, but we do have Plan Bs going on, as we do every week."
Zimmer didn’t have a timeframe for when Rudolph or Cassel might return. Cassel is scheduled to see a foot specialist.
Greenway’s status is uncertain as well. He was limited last week with hand and rib injuries. Zimmer said last week Greenway was dealing with a broken hand. Zimmer revealed Monday that Greenway has a broken rib, as well.
Asked if Greenway could play through the injury, Zimmer said, "Not like he did this week."
Greenway started on Sunday, keeping his streak of 115 straight games played and 89 consecutive starts intact. But he eventually had to leave the game.
"He had a hard game yesterday," Zimmer said of Greenway. "It’s my fault. He didn’t practice all week, and then we weren’t sure and thought he could go. So that was my mistake. He probably shouldn’t have went last week."
Cornerback Josh Robinson is dealing with a hamstring injury, but Zimmer wasn’t sure about the severity. Zimmer said defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd was improved this week with a shoulder injury.
"You never plan on having this many injuries as you have, but we’re not going to make excuses about it," Zimmer said. "I still believe that the best team, guys that play together, play the hardest, make the fewest mistakes, are going to win. Our expectation level is the guy that comes in has to come in and perform like he’s supposed to. So, our expectation level doesn’t change because of injuries."
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