Chris Tomasson / St. Paul Pioneer Press
EAGAN, Minn.—Minnesota Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen and running back Dalvin Cook were both ruled out Friday, Sept. 21, for Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills at U.S. Bank Stadium. Griffen, who has a knee injury, will be replaced by Stephen Weatherly. Cook, who has a hamstring injury, will be replaced by Latavius Murray. Vikings coach Mike Zimmer confirmed Friday before the injury report came out that Griffen and Cook not play. Also expected to be out Sunday are cornerback Marcus Sherels (ribs) and tight end David Morgan (knee). either practiced all week.
EAGAN, Minn.—When Tom Johnson returned to the Vikings, he was given a choice between wearing No. 95 or 96. The decision was easy. When Johnson was with the Vikings from 2014-17, he played alongside Brian Robison on the defensive line and had a locker near him at Winter Park. The two became close. Robison was released by the Vikings earlier this month after 11 seasons. Johnson, a defensive tackle, signed with Minnesota on Wednesday and went through his first practice wearing Robison's old No. 96.
ST. PAUL — The Vikings acquired another target for Kirk Cousins, one he knows well. The quarterback played a role in Minnesota's decision to sign wide receiver Aldrick Robinson this week. The two were teammates in Washington from 2012-14 when Cousins was primarily the backup. "I like him as a player," Cousins said Wednesday, Sept. 19. "He's a great teammate, will be great for our locker room, a veteran presence to have around; and hopefully he can contribute on the field for us."
EAGAN, Minn. — In five seasons as Vikings coach, Mike Zimmer has had four place-kickers. He hopes the latest one will stick around. Minnesota signed veteran Dan Bailey on Tuesday, Sept. 18, to replace rookie Daniel Carlson, cut after missing three field goals in Sunday's 29-29 tie at Green Bay. Carlson had beaten out Kai Forbath for the job, who had taken over for Blair Walsh in mid-November 2016. "We've been trying to get that position solidified," Zimmer said Wednesday. "If we can get that position solidified like we have with the quarterback, that would be good."
EAGAN, Minn. — Defensive tackle Tom Johnson is back with the Vikings. According to a source, Johnson, released by Seattle last week, will sign a one-year deal with Minnesota worth about $1 million plus possible incentives worth another $500,000. Johnson played with the Vikings from 2014-17. The Vikings also made official the signing of kicker Dan Bailey to replace Daniel Carlson, who was waived Monday. To make room on the roster, the Vikings waived wide receiver Stacy Coley.
EAGAN, Minn.—Entering Sunday, Sept. 16, it had been nearly four years since the Vikings had a punt blocked. That changed early in the first quarter of a 29-29 tie at Green Bay. Geronimo Allison blocked Matt Wile's punt and Josh Jackson recovered it in the end zone for a touchdown. "I just know right when I was making contact with the ball, it was, 'Huh, well, there's someone there,' '' Wile said Monday, Sept. 17, about what happened. "But after that punt, I just was focused on coming back and hitting good punts for rest of the game.''
EAGAN, Minn. — Because his father was a big fan of Deacon Jones, Sheldon Richardson grew up watching old films of the legendary pass rusher. Jones coined the term "sack," and used such tactics as the head slap on opposing offensive linemen. Richardson, a Vikings defensive tackle, can only imagine what he could accomplish if the NFL allowed him the same leniency as Jones had in the 1960s. "You remember how Deacon Jones used to get sacks and stuff like that?" Richardson said Monday, Sept. 17. "I'm pretty sure it's a way lot different now." It sure is.
The Vikings on Monday planned to waive rookie kicker Daniel Carlson and sign veteran Dan Bailey, sources said. Carlson, a fifth-round pick last April, missed three field goals in Sunday’s 29-29 tie at Green Bay. A source said the Vikings also plan to sign wide receiver Aldrick Robinson. Bailey is the second-most accurate kicker in NFL in NFL history at 88.2 percent, behind only Justin Tucker at 90.3 percent. Bailey kicked for Dallas from 2011-17 before he was released Sept. 1 in a surprise move.
GREEN BAY, Wis.—Kirk Cousins knows all about putting up big yardage and having a game end in a tie. In 2016, Cousins threw for a career-high 458 yards, but his Washington Redskins tied the Cincinnati Bengals 27-27. On Sunday, Sept. 16, the 30-year-old quarterback threw for 425 yards but the Minnesota Vikings tied Green Bay 29-29 at Lambeau Field.
GREEN BAY, Wis.—After Sunday's 29-29 tie with Green Bay, Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr wore a T-shirt reading, "The Earth is Flat." So, Barr does really believe it is? "I like to have fun," said Barr, not directly answering the question. "I like to cause a little stir, get people thinking a little bit."