Percy Harvin (Ronald Martinez/Getty)
The Vikings are coming to the realization that Percy Harvin’s migraines could hit at any time and now have a “migraine personnel package,” according to Brad Childress. What exactly that entails is still a little fuzzy.
The Vikings know that Percy Harvin’s availability is always day to day, so two days after he missed another practice, head coach Brad Childress said the team now has a “migraine personnel package.”
It’s unclear if that is a nickname for the packages used when Harvin is on the field or when he isn’t available, but it involves a “couple of little different twists, wrinkles,” Childress said.
The Vikings have been forced to make several adjustments to their receiving corps since the start of the preseason because of injuries. When Harvin was out for an extended period due to the death of his grandmother and dealing with a more extensive migraine, the Vikings signed Greg Camarillo. When they lost Sidney Rice for at least the first six weeks of the season because of hip surgery, the team signed Javon Walker but ended up parting ways with him before the season began.
Just this week, the Vikings signed Hank Baskett after he was released by the Philadelphia Eagles.
“He came in knowing multiple spots,” Childress said of Baskett, who played in a similar offense in Philadelphia. “We talk about some of the verbiage that’s changed – like migraine personnel – they don’t need to know what that is in Philadelphia right now. He’s been here for the whole game plan. He didn’t get here for the whole base installation Wednesday morning (when he was signing), but he’s up to speed on most of it.”
Baskett said he was encouraged by the amount of plays the coaches placed on his plate since he started practicing on Wednesday. He said he was thrown into the fire immediately.
“The only way you get the quarterback’s confidence is to get out there with the quarterback,” he said. “You can sit there and recite everything in the book and know everything, read it in the book, but until you go out on the field and perform, then you’re never going to get his confidence.”
CORNERS GETTING CLOSE?
The Vikings listed two cornerbacks with knee injuries – Cedric Griffin and rookie Chris Cook – as questionable, but they seem to be making progress. Griffin even lined up with the first-team defense for a portion of Friday’s practice and Cook has made it through a full practice routine this week.
“They are getting closer. They’ve had good weeks of practice here,” Childress said.
With Cook measuring 6-foot-2 and Griffin 6 feet tall, they are the two tallest cornerbacks on the roster and could be helpful defending Detroit’s 6-foot-5 receiver, Calvin Johnson, on Sunday.
“If you can play corner as a 6-foot corner that can play big, that never hurts you to have guys of that size,” Childress said.
Defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy is also questionable with a knee injury. None of those three defenders has been active yet this season.
Several other Vikings working through injuries this week were listed as probable, meaning there is a “virtual certainty” they will play. They are: WR Bernard Berrian (knee), QB Brett Favre (ankle/right elbow), WR Percy Harvin (hip), LB Ben Leber (back), T Bryant McKinnie (finger) and C John Sullivan (calf).
Favre, Harvin, Berrian and Griffin were all limited in practice Friday.
Detroit has already declared WR Nate Burleson (ankle), LB Zack Follett (concussion) and QB Matthew Stafford (shoulder) as out.
DE Cliff Avril (knee/finger), LB Landon Johnson (neck), LB DeAndre Levy (groin) and G Stephen Peterman (foot) are questionable. Safties C.C. Brown (forearm) and Louis Delmas (groin/biceps/calf) and LB Ashlee Palmer (ankle) are all probable.
McKinnie played last week with a cast on his index finger. “I did OK with it. Just get through this game and then give it a rest and I should be ready to come back,” he said. With a bye week following the Detroit game, the cast could come off before the team’s Oct. 11 game at the New York Jets.
The Vikings’ music at the start of practice on Friday? “Startin’ Something” by Michael Jackson, likely a reference to starting a winning streak.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.