Big-Name Reinforcements on the Way for Vikings

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The Minnesota Vikings took care of business in Atlanta on Sunday, somehow downing the Falcons with a quarterback who had lived on the roster for five days.

Josh Dobbs was fantastic, displaying a visible clutch gene down the stretch of the Falcons-Vikings showdown and helping Minnesota defeat the Dirty Birds 31-28.

Big-Name Reinforcements on the Way for Vikings

And don’t look now, but some big-name Vikings players will be eligible to return in no time. When the “easy” part of Minnesota’s schedule winds down, the club will need all the help it can get against teams like the Cincinnati Bengals and Detroit Lions.

Here’s a look at the players who should return soon.

Justin Jefferson (WR)

Name Reinforcements
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The Vikings best player is eligible to return this Sunday for the date with the Saints.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted this word salad over the weekend, “Vikings’ Pro Bowl wide receiver Justin Jefferson is eligible to come off the injured reserve this week from a hamstring injury that was expected to sideline him four to six weeks. But Jefferson still has to meet with the doctors, the team has to decide how it wants to handle Jefferson, and there currently continues to be uncertainty about his status, per sources, despite the fact that he could be activated as early as this week.”

That basically means Jefferson’s return is imminent, needing a greenlight from doctors. And with the Vikings firmly in the hunt for the postseason — and the NFC North — Jefferson will return sooner rather than later.

Christian Darrisaw (LT)

OL Ranking for 2023
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Darrisaw missed Sunday’s game with a groin injury that popped up right before the win over Atlanta. The injury didn’t sound terribly nagging or serious, meaning Darrisaw will likely be day-to-day on this week’s injury report.

Thankfully for the Vikings sake, backup OT David Quessenberry filled in wonderfully versus Atlanta, as the days of Minnesota’s guaranteed OL troubles are dead.

Marcus Davenport (OLB)

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Davenport will be eligible to return from injured reserve after Sunday’s game against the Saints. Of the three — Jefferson, Darrisaw, and Davenport — he’s the most probable to encounter a more prolonged absence. High ankle sprains can linger.

But when Davenport is back, Brian Flores’ defense will only improve. The group has matured on the fly intensely in the last five weeks, and Davenport in peak form will be a welcome sight.

In reality, though, Davenport may not return until Thanksgiving or after.

The Others

WR Returns
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Then, the non-superstars:

  • Brian Asamoah (LB)
  • Nick Mullens (QB)
  • Jalen Nailor (WR)
  • Kene Nwangwu (RB-KR)
  • Chris Reed (OG)

All five men can be contributors, if needed, on Vikings gamedays, with some special emphasis on Nwangwu. Minnesota reportedly lost running back Cam Akers for the season on Sunday to a torn Achilles. Nwangwu doesn’t have vast experience in the Vikings offense as a halfback, but if there was ever a time to give it a whirl, that is now.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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