Victory comes with price

Charles Gordon (Gergory Shamus/Getty)

The Vikings beat the Packers but are going to lose Chuck Gordon for the season.

Sunday's victory over Green Bay came with a price.

Lost amid the celebration over the first win in six tries in the Brad Childress era over the Packers was a nasty left ankle injury to Charles Gordon that will end his season.

"We haven't talked about (injured reserve) yet," head coach Brad Childress said Monday. "I know that he is talking with his agent right now about having a surgical procedure on whether he does that here in the Twin Cities or elsewhere. We're about to go upstairs and talk about that."

On a punt return midway through the second quarter, Gordon tried to elude oncoming tacklers and, in the process, got his ankle rolled up by linebacker Desmond Bishop and, in an instant, saw his 2008 season wiped out with a snap of his ankle.

Even his teammates winced at the sight of what they saw – Gordon's ankle bent in a position it was not intended to go. As Gordon lay on the ground in agony, the TV broadcast of the game showed a replay, in which you could see his ankle trapped under the body of Bishop and the ankle simply gave way – much in the same way Joe Theismann's lower leg gave way under the weight of Lawrence Taylor.

"It's a break," Childress said. "A break that's akin to a high ankle sprain if you remember Terrell Owens' high ankle sprain. … They'll have to do some mechanical work inside."

It was clear there was something very wrong from the outset. Vikings players were frantically waving the medical staff to get out on the field and, after his ankle was immobilized, several members of the Packers came by to wish Gordon well. The injury was so hideous that the FOX TV crew opted not to show any more replays after the first one clearly and graphically showed the extent of the damage.

"Whenever you see a guy's leg turned, you just turn away. You don't even want to look at," said safety Darren Sharper.

Gordon appeared in the locker room after the game with a cast on the injured ankle, which is likely going to require surgery. He didn't speak to reporters.

"Chuck's been having a great year for us," Sharper said. "Everyone likes him. He's one of the favorites on the team, gets along with everybody. You saw the foot turn. You hate seeing that stuff. We saw it when he was laying down, his foot turned the wrong way."

"It hit guys because everyone likes Chuck so much. They know, as a young player, what the future holds for a guy like that and how well he's been playing."

It is likely that Gordon will be placed on injured reserve as early as today and the long healing process will begin.

MONDAY NOTES

  • With Gordon gone, his role as nickel back in the Vikings defense will be taken by either Benny Sapp or Marcus McCauley. McCauley, who saw considerable action as a rookie due to injuries, has spent much of this season as a Sunday deactivation.

  • The future of Robert Ferguson remains very much in limbo as he was once again a healthy scratch on Sunday. Reports last week were that after missing practice on Wednesday, Ferguson's locker had much of its contents removed by Friday's practice – speculating that he may be released at some point.

  • According to the numbers crunchers at Elias Sports Bureau, the six touchdowns allowed by the Vikings special teams ties a single-season NFL record. The worst part is that the Vikings have seven games in which to break that record.

  • Kicker Steve Hauschka, who spent training camp competing with Ryan Longwell, made a 54-yard field goal Sunday for the Ravens. Hauschka became the first Ravens kicker other than Matt Stover to attempt a field goal, when another former Viking Aaron Elling missed a 54-yard attempt. Hauschka was signed by the Ravens after his release to be a kickoff specialist.

  • Daunte Culpepper had an up and down performance in his Detroit debut Sunday. He threw an interception on his second pass and was benched in the fourth quarter, but also completed a 51-yard bomb to Calvin Johnson that set up an early TD for the Lions. He finished the game completing five of 10 passes for 104 yards with no TDs and one interception.
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