Newest Vikings Injury Report Is Remarkable

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Week 1 is right around the corner. The Minnesota Vikings are scheduled to face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at U.S. Bank Stadium to open their season. Tampa Bay is coming off a down-season, but they still managed to win the NFC South before they were bounced in the wild-card round, just like the 13-4 Vikings. Both teams try to repeat their division championships.

Newest Vikings Injury Report Is Remarkable

Newest Vikings Injury Report Is Remarkable
The Tennessee Titans face the Minnesota Vikings during the first quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn., Saturday, Aug. 19, 2023. © Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA TODAY NETWORK.

After playing three meaningless preseason contests and spending months preparing for the season, the games finally count. For that reason, the injury reports are notable because player health is an essential part of success in the NFL. Every year, a badly injured team drafts highly instead of competing for the Super Bowl. The absence of a critical player in the season’s first game can quickly jeopardize the campaign.

The good news, however, is that the Vikings are almost fully healthy entering Week 1. Head coach Kevin O’Connell only mentioned Troy Dye during his media availability:

Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell at the 2023 mandatory minicamp in Eagan. The Vikings won 13 games in O’Connell’s first season as head coach. He previously won a Super Bowl with the Los Angeles Rams as offensive coordinator in 2021.

“Troy Dye will be the only player we will list on the injury report with an elbow (injury), but he will be a full participant, and (we) expect him, barring any setbacks, to participate in the game on Sunday.”

Fans don’t need to monitor any big injury situations. The stars are all ready to go. The only significant injury in training camp was when defensive tackle James Lynch tore his ACL. He is now sitting on IR, and his season is over.

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The defensive line starters are Harrison Phillips at the nose tackle position and the duo of Dean Lowry and Jonathan Bullard at the defensive end spots. Backups are rookie Jaquelin Roy and, surprisingly, Khyiris Tonga. The five guys will rotate much, and some edge-rushers like Marcus Davenport will also receive some snaps inside.

Chris Reed suffered a non-football injury in the offseason and is on the NFI list. The offensive line returns all five starters from last season, including the shaky interior three. Backups are Blake Brandel and Austin Schlottmann for the three inside spots and David Quessenberry and Oli Udoh for the tackle positions.

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Running back and kick return star Kene Nwangwu is on IR with a lower back injury and will miss the first four games, but there has been some optimism that he could be back shortly after his mandated absence. Ty Chandler will return kicks.

The players that missed some part of training camp, like the two important cornerbacks Akayleb Evans and Mekhi Blackmon or rookie wideout Jordan Addison, are all full-go and have been for a while. A healthy team is a good foundation to repeat last year’s success in the season opener against the Green Bay Packers.

Injuries are part of the sport, and the Vikings will be without some players throughout the season — but not this week.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt