Vikings News: Irv Smith Jr. update, Garrett Bradbury Injury, Jim Harbaugh

(Photo by Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports) Irv Smith Jr.
(Photo by Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports) Irv Smith Jr. /

Among some of the most notable pieces of recent Minnesota Vikings news is that it sounds like the team is expecting tight end Irv Smith Jr. to be back on the field for the playoffs. 

Minnesota Vikings tight end Irv Smith Jr. hasn’t appeared in a game this season since Week 8, but his absence from the field could soon be coming to an end.

Last week, the Vikings designated Smith to return from injured reserve, and on Thursday, Minnesota offensive coordinator Wes Phillips said he expects the tight end to be part of the team’s “playoff run” this season.

An ankle injury is what caused the Vikings to place Smith on injured reserve back in November. His return could provide Minnesota’s offense with another weapon to utilize in this season’s playoffs.

More Minnesota Vikings News

  • Vikings center Garrett Bradbury spoke to the Star Tribune’s Andrew Krammer on Thursday and the veteran offensive lineman shared that his back injury is “feeling better,” but he’s still taking his recovery “one day at a time,” and he described the healing process as a “slow ramp.” Bradbury still hasn’t been practicing, so Chris Reed and the newly acquired Greg Mancz have been getting work at center this week for Minnesota.
  • The Vikings dropped four spots and are currently in the No. 11 slot in the latest NFL power rankings from’s Dan Hanzus.
  • Thursday was the three-year anniversary of Minnesota’s overtime win over the heavily favored New Orleans Saints during the 2019 playoffs. It always feels good to send the Saints home in the postseason.

NFL News

Former Vikings head-coaching target Jim Harbaugh has been involved in a number of recent rumors about some of the head coach vacancies around the NFL. On Thursday, Harbaugh released a statement where he somehow found a way to commit and not commit to his current job at the University of Michigan.

Whether he truly wants to remain at the school or not, his future might have already been decided as Michigan is reportedly facing some pretty significant sanctions due to multiple violations made by the University.

An easy way for Harbaugh to avoid any sort of harsh penalty from the NCAA would be to take a job in the NFL this year.

Based on his interest in returning to the pro level last year and what sort of penalties Michigan could be facing, Harbaugh becoming an NFL head coach in 2023 seems almost inevitable.

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