Latest update on Danielle Hunter isn’t going to thrill Vikings fans

(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Danielle Hunter
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Danielle Hunter /

Minnesota Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter still has not attended any of the team’s voluntary OTA practices this offseason.

Everyone is aware of the impact Danielle Hunter is capable of making on the field for the Minnesota Vikings. But the impact of not having him active for an entire season was arguably even greater for the Vikings.

Without Hunter on the field for any of their 16 games in 2020, Minnesota’s defense finished with 25 fewer sacks than the amount they accumulated in 2019.

Hunter is expected to be ready to go for Week 1 of the upcoming 2021 season. However, he hasn’t been among the Vikings players to attend the team’s voluntary OTA practices this year, and that’s starting to become a concern for some.

Mike Zimmer asked when he thinks Danielle Hunter will show up to the Minnesota Vikings facilities

On Wednesday, Minnesota head coach took some questions from the local Twin Cities media during a virtual press conference.

With Hunter still not attending the Vikings’ voluntary OTA practice sessions since they began last week, Zimmer was, unsurprisingly, asked about the star defensive end’s whereabouts, and when he thinks he might show up to the team’s facilities.

The Minnesota head coach revealed that he has not heard from Hunter since the start of the team’s OTAs, and as far as when the talented pass rusher could join his teammates on the field, Zimmer said, “we’ll just see when minicamp shows up.”

The tone of Zimmer’s answer didn’t sound incredibly concerning. But it’s definitely inching closer to him throwing his hands up in the air and telling reporters that he’s tired of talking about a player who isn’t even at the team’s practice facilities.

Like Zimmer said though, whether Hunter shows up to mandatory minicamp later this month will be very telling. An absence from these practices could result in fines of almost $100,000 for the veteran pass rusher.

With Minnesota just getting a bunch of additional cap space on Tuesday, however, perhaps a new deal for the 26-year-old defensive end could be finalized sooner than later.

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Something just needs to be figured out soon because the Vikings’ pass rush can not survive another season without Hunter being on the field.