Percy Harvin (Jim McIsaac/Getty)
The Vikings had one starter sitting to start the game and two more joining him by the end of their 27-13 loss to the Bears. Plus, the lack of sacks return, Favre talks about his relationship with Brad Childress and the NFL’s investigation.
Percy Harvin’s weekday migraines couldn’t sideline him Sunday, but eventually another tweaking of the ankle did.
Vikings coach Brad Childress said Friday that Harvin was still dealing with some effects of his migraine headaches, placing his status for Sunday’s game at “questionable.”
Harvin played and was effective until he left in the fourth quarter when his leg got bent back at the end of a kickoff return.
“Same spot. He tweaked it,” Childress said.
Harvin’s injury further compounded a bleak state of affairs at receiver for the Vikings.
Bernard Berrian was added to the injury report on Friday with a groin strain. Berrian was made active for the game, but he apparently suffered a setback in warmups, according to Brett Favre.
“He was set to go. We had him up and I knew it was bugging him a little bit, but he said he needed to go,” Childress said.
Berrian wrote on his Twitter page that he played through the injury last week and took offense at people that were questioning his toughness or heart.
When it came to game time, Berrian wasn’t going. He was sidelined for the entire game, joining backup QB Tarvaris Jackson as the only active players that didn’t play.
“You like to have all those playmakers. It was going to be Greg Camarillo and Bernard Berrian and Hank Baskett and Greg Lewis - we have five up for a reason,” Childress said. “We like to have five in some of those packages. It’s football. We had enough to play.”
Barely. By the time the Vikings needed their receivers for the hurry-up offense in another attempt at a fourth-quarter comeback, they were left without Berrian and Harvin.
Last year’s Pro Bowl receiver, Sidney Rice, wasn’t added to the 53-man roster on Saturday as his attempt to come back after hip surgery on Aug. 23 continues.
“We went through yesterday morning to see how he came back from Friday’s practice and I’m not going to say we went until the 3 p.m. deadline, but we had a mock game yesterday morning and just talked to him,” Childress said.
Rice is eligible to continue practicing with the Vikings this week, but they will have to make a decision on his roster status by next week – either elevating him onto the 53-man practice squad or placing him on injured reserve.
BACK TO A LACK OF SACKS
The Vikings had six sacks through seven games, but they appeared to be back on track after a six-sack performance against the Arizona Cardinals and Derek Anderson last Sunday. That momentum didn’t continue into the Bears game.
Jared Allen registered the only sack of the game – for either team – but the Vikings weren’t getting consistent pressure on Cutler.
“I’ll have to go back and watch film to look at the whole thing, but I thought there were times we were definitely making him run more than just sitting back with the ball,” Allen said. “You’ve got to make plays on the ball.”
The overwhelming statistic for the Vikings was the incredible success the Bears experienced on third downs. They entered the game ranked worst in the league converting third downs, but they didn’t look like it against the Vikings, converting an impressive 58 percent of their attempts, more than double their season average.
“At the simplest level, you have to be able to stay on the field offensively, and you have to be able to get off the field on the defensive side of the football. That was a struggle for us,” Childress said.
On the other hand, the Vikings only converted 11 percent – just one of nine third-down attempts.
“People ask about third downs and I think there were nine; seven of them were double-digit third downs, which lends itself to first- and second-down issues, lost-yardage plays, or certain yardage plays or incompletions,” Childress said.
Childress was close. Six of the Vikings’ nine third-down plays were third-and-10 or longer.
FAVRE TALKS … MORE
Brett Favre is never short on verbiage, but he had a couple of interesting answers during an interview with his former quarterbacks coach from their early days in Green Bay, Steve Mariucci, now of NFL Network.
Last year, Childress considered benching Favre on a couple of occasions, so what is their relationship like this year?
“About the same (as last year). A lot has been made of it. I think a lot of it has been blown out of proportion,” Favre said. “Brad’s a good guy. My dealings offensively are with Darrell Bevell, offensive coordinator. It’s a good relationship. I have no problems with Brad.”
Last Sunday, Favre threw for a career-high 446 yards and led the Vikings on their biggest fourth-quarter comeback in franchise history, leading the offense to two touchdowns in the final four minutes.
“It’s got to be top five and it has nothing to do with the amount of yardage even though that’s the most yardage I’ve ever thrown for,” Favre said.
He also said he hasn’t heard a word recently on the NFL’s investigation into allegations that he sent inappropriate texts and pictures to former New York Jets employee Jenn Sterger, a potential violation of the league’s personal conduct policy. He could face a potential fine or suspension, but he said it hasn’t been too tough to deal with.
“Not that difficult. Our season has been a struggle. As I’ve said before, let the league do its due diligence and in the end that will sort itself out,” Favre said.
Starting center John Sullivan left the game during the Vikings’ first offensive series with another calf injury. “He kind of felt something pop in there and thought maybe he was going to get some back up, but John Cooper jumped in there and did a decent job, I thought,” Childress said.
Randy Moss will be receiving $500,000 in royalties from the sale of his Vikings and Patriots jerseys this year, despite not be employed by either team in the second half of the season, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported.
The Vikings wore their purple pants for the second consecutive game, but this time they had the predominately white jerseys.