Vikings rule out Williams for season opener

Defensive tackle Kevin Williams won't play in Sunday's opener as he recovers from a hyperextended knee.

Kevin Williams has been ruled out of Sunday's season opener against the Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said Friday.

The Minnesota Vikings' defensive tackle didn't practice Friday because of a hyperextended knee suffered in the third preseason game. He took a blindside hit to his right knee from San Francisco 49ers offensive linemen Joe Looney.

"It did bruise the bone pretty bad and then it did have the hyperextension on the PCL. It's all got to work together and heal up," Williams said Friday. "The swelling's out and now we've just got to let the injury heal."

Williams hasn't practiced since suffering the injury on Aug. 25, but he is "really hopeful" that he will play in the Vikings' Week 2 game at Chicago on Sept. 15.

"I'd be shocked if I didn't play next week," Williams said.

When he hasn't been going through rehabilitation on his knee, Williams has been in meetings to help out his potential replacements. Among those is first-round pick Sharrif Floyd.

"It will be a mix (replacing Williams)," Frazier said. "Kevin, we're going to miss obviously. He's been a cornerstone at that position."

Floyd is also coming off a knee injury that required a "minor procedure" after the second preseason game. He hasn't played since, but Frazier said Floyd is ready.

"(Floyd) hasn't shown any adverse effects from that injury. He's done everything we've asked him to do so we're going to let him (play).

"We expected to play him in this game based on some of the things we had seen over the spring, along with training camp. He had done a good job after his injury."

Williams has missed only four games in his 10-year career, two because of a right knee injury in 2005 and two because of a suspension in 2011 for violating the league's policy on anabolic steroids and related substances in the StarCaps case. Williams took the weight-loss supplement that didn't list the banned ingredient Bumetanide on the label.

"I've been telling these guys since yesterday, it's kind of frustrating. I've never missed a game other than the suspension and maybe the one way back when, but nobody remembers that. It's a little frustrating because I feel good," Williams said.

With the Lions one of the NFL's most dangerous passing teams, having a veteran pass rusher like Williams – and the added depth for rotational purposes – would be helpful. But Detroit offensive coordinator Scott Linehan knows the Vikings have other defensive linemen who are capable.

"It's a tough test. Every week it's going to be that way, but we know these guys. Their front is one of the best in the league," Linehan said. "It's going to be a fun challenge, though, I'm looking forward to it."

The Lions have three new starters on their offensive line, but Linehan said his rebuilt offensive line is up to the challenge.


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.

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