The Vikings have experienced their first semi-serious injury of training camp. Tuesday in afternoon practice drills TE John Carlson did something to his knee and was forced to leave the field. Examination showed a sprained MCL, but the full extent of the damage won’t be known until an MRI can be performed. Carlson will at the very least miss a few weeks.
Surgery will likely not be necessary if indeed the injury turns out to be a sprain and not a tear. “It heals by itself so it’s a little bit more of a pain-tolerance thing, depending on how he feels,” Leslie Frazier said after practice.
The Vikings signed Carlson to a free agent contract this offseason in hopes of teaming him with Kyle Rudolph to form a deadly 1-2 TE punch, but those plans are on hold at least for the time being. Carlson of course has previous experience with big injuries. His 2011 season ended prematurely when he tore his labrum and was placed on IR by Seattle.
With Carlson on the shelf, the Vikings now have Mickey Shuler and Allen Reisner behind Rudolph, and rookie Rhett Ellison who is listed as a TE but projects as an H-back.