The loss of Adrian Peterson was supposed to be the biggest news out of Winter Park today, but when Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer took the podium this morning, everything changed.
Zimmer quickly addressed Peterson’s surgery, then announced the team had placed left tackle Matt Kalil on Injured Reserve. According to Andrew Krammer, Kalil’s hip injury has been an issue since the preseason. The injury appears to be season-ending, forcing T.J. Clemmings into the starting role at left tackle.
Last season, Clemmings started every game at right tackle for the Vikings and struggled in his rookie season. There’s plenty of room for improvement when Clemmings makes the switch, as Kalil was Pro Football Focus’s 65th-ranked offensive tackle this season.
Later in the press conference, Zimmer announced a few changes in the backfield. He named Jerick McKinnon the starter for Sunday’s game against the Carolina Panthers and announced the team’s signing of free agent running back Ronnie Hillman.