EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) — Adrian Peterson and the Minnesota Vikings have returned from a painful road trip.
Not only did the Vikings lose the lead Sunday in Baltimore three times in the fourth quarter — including twice in the final 90 seconds — then saw their star running back and several other players suffer significant injuries during the loss.
This excruciating season only has three weeks left.
Peterson walked through the Vikings locker room with a boot on his right foot Monday on his way to get a CT scan. X-rays previously revealed no broken bones. Peterson said the medical staff has ruled out the type of Lisfranc injury that can keep a player sidelined for months, rather than weeks. He also said he had minimal swelling the day after the game.
Though he said he’s still sore, Peterson said he’s expecting to play this weekend against Philadelphia.
“Nothing is torn. That’s always good,” he said.
Coach Leslie Frazier said the Vikings need to see how severe the injury is before determining the status of their franchise player.
Backup Toby Gerhart, who ran 15 times for 89 yards and one of the those go-ahead touchdowns, hurt his hamstring and left the game. Matt Asiata is next on the depth chart. Fullback Jerome Felton didn’t hesitate to declare his candidacy for carries, either.
“Nothing new to me. So if that’s the case, I’ll be ready,” Felton said.
But wait, there’s more:
— Right guard Brandon Fusco, quietly having a solid year, hurt his knee in the first quarter and didn’t return. Joe Berger filled in.
— Tight end John Carlson left in the third quarter because of a concussion. Starter Kyle Rudolph, who broke his foot six weeks ago, was believed to be progressing toward a return, but the Vikings placed him on season-ending injured reserve Monday.
— Cornerback Xavier Rhodes sprained his ankle in the fourth quarter and was using crutches after the game. Cornerback Josh Robinson isn’t ready to return from his broken sternum, so if Rhodes is out this week the available cornerbacks after Chris Cook will be Marcus Sherels, safety Robert Blanton and Shaun Prater.
— Also, the Vikings decided not to add wide receiver Greg Childs to the active roster. He’ll stay on the physically unable to perform list, still yet to play in an NFL game two seasons after tearing the patellar tendon in both knees during an injury in training camp last year.
Safety Harrison Smith is on track to return after missing two months with a turf toe injury. Frazier said the team will decide whether to activate him later this week.
Quarterback Christian Ponder, also, has passed his post-concussion tests and will be cleared to practice and play this week. Matt Cassel had a two-touchdown, turnover-free game against the Ravens, but Frazier said he hasn’t decided who will start against the Eagles.
On top of all the injuries, some Vikings felt the sting of ice-filled snowballs hitting them on the sideline from Ravens fans, which angered Peterson to the point he called them the worst in the NFL on Twitter after the game. Frazier said he got hit in the back, too.
“It was not specific to anyone. Anyone wearing purple. It’s not what the league wants, not what anybody wants,” Frazier said.
The coach said the NFL called him unsolicited on Monday to discuss calls during the game, some of which aided Ravens touchdowns in the 29-26 victory. He wouldn’t discuss details.
The Vikings have endured a largely miserable season; nine of their 13 games have essentially been decided in the final two minutes or less. They’re 3-5-1 in those games.
“When the guys are playing as hard as they’re playing and practicing and preparing the way they are and you don’t get a win, it’s hard. It’s really hard,” Frazier said.
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