Vikings hope Adrian Peterson will be able to practice Friday

Dec 8, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) runs onto the field during the game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Evan Habeeb/Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Adrian Peterson is out of a walking

boot, but Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier doesn’t believe Peterson will

return to practice until Friday with a sprained right foot.

A series of tests have ruled out anything serious with

Peterson’s foot, which was landed on by Baltimore linebacker Arthur Brown on

Sunday as he tried to make a tackle. Peterson is able to walk on the injured

foot, but won’t test the injury until later in the week.

“He can carry weight,” Frazier said. “We just

haven’t had him doing it in jogging or running. We’re going to have him the

pool today and we’ll do the same tomorrow and then Friday let him get out and

test it out and see how he feels. So we’ll take it slowly these first couple of

days and then ramp it up a little bit on Friday.”

Peterson, second in the league in rushing with 1,221 yards,

has also been playing through a groin injury, but the team is giving no thought

to shutting down the reigning MVP after being officially eliminated from the

playoffs.

“In talking to our trainers and doctors, they haven’t

talked to me about further injury,” Frazier said. “It’s more about

pain tolerance and can he do some of the things he needs to do to be able to

protect himself at the running back position that’s probably the bigger

question.”

Minnesota is also dealing with an injury to Peterson’s

backup, Toby Gerhart. Gerhart is dealing with a hamstring injury suffered on a

41-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss at Baltimore and

likely won’t return to practice until Friday as well.

Gerhart has filled in ably for Peterson at times this season

and in the past. He’s averaging 7.9 yards per carry this season. Last week in

snowy conditions, Peterson had seven carries for 13 yards before leaving in the

second quarter with the injury. Gerhart had 15 carries for 89 yards.

“I’m a little more optimistic with Toby than I am with

Adrian, but we’ll see,” Frazier said. “(Peterson is) a fast healer as

we all know. He can do things that most can’t when it comes to coming back from

injury. He believes he’s going to be ready to go.

“We were walking up the stairs a few minutes ago and I

said, ‘Hey what do you think.’ He said, ‘I’ll be ready coach. Don’t worry about

me.’ That’s Adrian. So we’ll see. But we’ll give it a few days and see where we

are at the end of the week.”

Frazier classified right guard Brandon Fusco (knee) and

rookie cornerback Xavier Rhodes (ankle sprain) as day-to-day heading into the

week. Both were injured and unable to finish Sunday’s game.

“Pretty sore today, so we’ll see if he’s doing better

tomorrow,” Frazier said of Rhodes.

Tight end John Carlson hasn’t passed concussion testing yet

and the team placed tight end Kyle Rudolph on season-ending injured reserve

earlier this week.

Carlson, who has 32 catches for 344 yards and has come on

since Rudolph broke his foot Nov. 3, also has a history of concussions.

“It depends on what the doctors tell me,” Frazier

said. “They haven’t mentioned to me that if he passes we have to be

cautious, so if they clear him and they tell me he’s cleared to play, then we’d

play him. But if they told me because of his history we’d need to be careful,

then that’s a different story.”

Frazier said safety Harrison Smith is still in line to

likely be activated from injured reserve on Friday and ready to play in

Sunday’s home game against Philadelphia.

“He’s going to be up and practicing so we’ll see how he

does throughout this week,” Frazier said. “He did a good job in these

two weeks in preparation for this week. So if everything goes well, we’ll get

him some action in the ballgame on Sunday.”

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