Oct 13, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Medical personnel tend to Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith (22) during an injury timeout in the third quarter of the game with the Carolina Panthers at Mall of America Field at H.H.H. Metrodome. Panthers win 35-10. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
The Minnesota Vikings have had a string of bad luck with injuries to many key players. Since the Vikings are now mathematically eliminated from playoff contention, it would make sense to have these players sit out the remainder of the season to get healthy for next year. With only three games remaining for Minnesota, the Vikings should want to rest up their players and look forward to a busy offseason and draft. But that doesn’t seem to be what the Vikings will do. From the sounds of it, the team is wanting to get their players back on the field as soon as possible.
Here is a list of injured players that that the team should consider putting on Injured Reserve:
Dec 8, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) gets carted off the field against the Baltimore Ravens at M
Adrian Peterson – running back (foot)
John Carlson – tight end (concussion)
Xavier Rhodes – cornerback (ankle)
Harrison Smith – safety (toe)
Brandon Fusco – guard (knee)
We have entered a situation where playing these guys could do more long term damage to their injuries and career than it would help them going forward. Many of them are young players with a long career in front of them. Others are veterans that have had numerous injuries, some of them career threatening, that could use some rest on their bones and joints. And, of course, you have Adrian Peterson. He’s the face of the franchise and the cornerstone of the organization.
Sure, getting guys like Peterson, Smith, and Rhodes back on the field may draw ratings and ticket sales, but is the profit off those players worth the risk that these players take by getting back on the field?
With so many free agents possibly leaving the Vikings after this season, the team needs to evaluate some of the younger talent already on the team. This could be a great opportunity to do that in a game time situation.
Hopefully, the Vikings evaluate the situation and decide against playing these guys and start looking forward to next year and the future of the organization.