Contrary to a report by Brian Baldinger of the NFL Network that was tweeted yesterday, Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins said at Wednesday’s press conference that it was Brett Jones, and not Danny Isidora, manning the center position during the team’s walkthrough this morning.
From Wednesday’s press conference:
Cousins: “I’m excited to build a rapport with Jones and the rest of the o-line…”
Reporter: So is Jones the center Sunday?
Cousins: “You’d have to ask coach Zimmer. I don’t set the roster. But yeah, he was the center at walkthrough today at 10:20.”
It wasn’t only Cousins who indicated the report may be false. Head coach Mike Zimmer said he “didn’t know” if Isidora would start this Sunday against the 49ers, adding “I saw the report. It didn’t come from me.”
The question of who will start at center has become a hot topic for Vikings fans. Due to offseason ankle and shoulder surgeries, starter Pat Elflein has missed more time than expected. The good news is he did not start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, indicating a return may be imminent. But in the meantime, either Jones or Isidora will need to fill in for Elflein until he’s ready to go.
Between the two, Jones is the only player with regular season experience at center. Because of that, he seems like the most logical candidate to start. Starting Jones at center would likely mean Tom Compton would get the nod at left guard, resulting in the following line:
LT Riley Reiff – LG Tom Compton – C Brett Jones – RG Mike Remmers – RT Rashod Hill
Starting Isidora at center would likely mean Jones would move to left guard. That would result in a starting front five of:
LT Riley Reiff – LG Brett Jones – C Danny Isidora – RG Mike Remmers – RT Rashod Hill
This makes sense if the team likes Jones as the left guard and simply wants to replace Isidora with Elflein when he returns. Either way, the Vikings offensive line situation is still unsettled.
Did Cousins accidentally reveal what Zimmer was trying to keep secret? Be sure to tune into VT this week for more updates of “As the Vikings Offensive Line Turns.”
#Vikings HC Mike Zimmer, when asked who the starting center week 1 will be: “Well, not you.”
— Sean Borman (@SeanBoarMan) September 3, 2018