Antoine Winfield got back onto the practice field this week, for the first time since injuring his foot early in the Vikings‘ win over the Ravens.
Mostly Winfield was just testing the foot to see how it felt, and did not participate in any drills. This should’ve been the first hint that he was not seriously targeting this Sunday’s game vs. the Lions as the date of his return. And, in fact, today Winfield made it official, by announcing he will not suit up against Detroit.
“I’m close,” Winfield explained. “I’ve been working the last, what, four weeks, three weeks trying to get this injury [healed]. … I feel like next week. I’ve been out the last couple of days running on it, testing it. It’s good going forward but I still have a little problem cutting. But I would say next week I should be OK.”
Next week, the Vikings play the Seahawks, who have a veteran quarterback in Matt Hasselbeck and some legitimate receivers in Nate Burleson and the disgruntled T.J. Houshmandzadeh. This week they play the Lions who have a green rookie quarterback in Matthew Stafford, one good receiver in Calvin Johnson and…not a hell of a lot else.
In other words, the Vikings should be able to handle Detroit without Winfield.
Resting him one more week is the prudent and sensible decision, and we know that Brad Childress is nothing if not prudent and sensible (except when he gets his hands on a tube of lipstick).