MINNESOTA VIKINGS
September 24, 2005 07:10:52 PT
KFFL

OFFICIAL INJURY REPORT

PROBABLE: DL Lance Johnstone (hamstring), DL Kenechi Udeze (calf), LB Sam Cowart (calf), LB Dontarrious Thomas (hamstring), FS Darren Sharper (calf)
DOUBTFUL: WR Nate Burleson (knee), LB E.J. Henderson (ankle)
INJURED RESERVE: C Matt Birk (hip), DL Steve Martin (ankle)
SUSPENDED: RB Onterrio Smith
NFI: WR Aaron Hosack (undisclosed)

CURRENT UPDATES

NOTES AND MISCELLANEOUS UPDATES
-- 9/24 -- RB Michael Bennett isn't sure what his role will be Sunday, Sept. 25, but he knows he won't be starting. "I don't know who's starting," Bennett said. "My coach told me I'm the minute man, so I guess that means I have to be ready any minute." As previously noted, RB Mewelde Moore has been working with the first team in practice and is scheduled to start.

PREVIOUS UPDATES

OFFENSE
-- QB Daunte Culpepper (knee) has been playing with an injured right knee that has caused mild concern within the Vikings organization. Culpepper was seen wearing a tight elastic brace around the knee Sunday, Sept. 18. The team has not revealed the exact nature of the injury, but head coach Mike Tice alluded to it during his pregame radio interview on KFAN radio. Tice indicated the injury occurred during the season-opening loss to Tampa Bay. Culpepper was not listed on the injury report because the injury did not force him to miss any practice time, but it might have played a role in his decision to run only twice for 10 yards during the team's Week 2 loss.
-- WR Nate Burleson (knee) missed practice again Friday, Sept. 23. He remains listed as doubtful, but he is not expected to play in the team's Week 3 game.

DEFENSE
-- DE Lance Johnstone (hamstring) did not practice Friday, Sept. 23. He remains probable for the team's Week 3 game.
-- DE Kenechi Udeze (right calf) practiced Friday, Sept. 23. He remains probable for the team's Week 3 game.
-- LB Sam Cowart (calf) practiced Friday, Sept. 23 and is listed as probable for Week 3. He made it through a full practice.
-- LB Dontarrious Thomas (hamstring) is expected to start the team's Week 3 game at weakside linebacker in place of injured LB E.J. Henderson (ankle). Thomas was added to the team's injury report as probable with a hamstring injury. He did not practice Friday, Sept. 23.
-- LB E.J. Henderson (ankle) indicated he would not play Sunday, Sept. 25. He has not practiced this week and remains doubtful with a high ankle sprain.
-- S Darren Sharper (knee) did not practice Friday, Sept. 23. Head coach Mike Tice said Sharper will be a game-time decision, but Sharper is expected to play in the team's Week 3 game.
-- CB Antoine Winfield (feet) is not listed on the injury report and is on track to recover and play full speed for the Week 3 game.

NOTES AND MISCELLANEOUS UPDATES
-- 9/21 -- WR Koren Robinson is set to play in Week 3, but his playing time will be determined on how well he practices Thursday, Sept. 22. Robinson fielded some special teams returns during practice Wednesday, Sept. 21.

-- 9/20 -- Offensive coordinator Steve Loney said he would understand if he was stripped of the play-calling duties soon. "So if it does, it does," Loney said of a role change. "If it takes me picking tape up off the locker room floor — if that'll help us win — I'll be happy to do that too. When you only have one touchdown in two games, you obviously have some things to fix." Head coach Mike Tice stressed that changes will be made in the near future to get the club going in the right direction. "We will address some things," Tice said. "I am sure that there will be some tweaks. How many and how much, time will tell over the next two days in what direction we go." It is a possibility Tice will assume the play-calling duties of the offense in place of Loney. ... Head coach Mike Tice said that TE Jermaine Wiggins did not get enough balls thrown his way during the Week 2 game.