Final Injury Report: Vikings v Raiders

Minnesota Vikings football is finally back later today, as they take on the Las Vegas Raiders in their first action since this past winter. Coming into this game, both teams have a few key inactives that they would’ve liked to get some reps before the season starts. In this article, I’ll be going over who’s out, who’s a maybe, and how that affects this upcoming game. 

Las Vegas Raiders
  The silver and black have six players guaranteed to be out. These players are all either depth role players like Bilal Nichols or Trayvon Mullen Jr, or serious benchwarmers. There’s one more player listed as “questionable,” being Darren Waller. The ailment keeping him out of this contest is a nagging hamstring injury that’s resulted in lost time in training camp prior to this game as well. Waller is a major loss for the Raiders, considering that even with their addition of Davante Adams in the offseason, they have a noticeably weak receiver core behind him. With Waller being one of the best underrated receiving tight ends in the league as of now, he gives a major spark with his towering 6’ 6”, 255 lb. frame and ability to slide out of the TE position and play wideout. 

Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings have a few more major pieces sitting this one out than the Raiders. Starting tight end Irv Smith Jr, who is looked at as hopefully having a breakout year, is still recovering from thumb surgery underwent during the offseason. Smith has been a developmental piece for the Vikings and has shown flashes, but hasn’t yet come into his own. Injuries are one of, if not the biggest method to slowing or weakening a players development. Outside a couple of depth receivers (Myron Mitchell and Blake Proehl) and a backup linebacker (Ryan Connelly), the other major omission from today’s contest will be starting quarterback Kirk Cousins. He tested positive for COVID-19, head coach Kevin O’Connell announced on Friday. Many fans, including myself, were looking forward to seeing the first few drives of the new, pass heavy scheme O’Connell brought in with Cousins at the helm, but that time will have to wait. Losing out on Cousins means less time to prepare for regular season kickoff, and with every season seeming like a make-or-break/prove it year for the veteran, he needs all the time he can get. All eyes are on Kirk Cousins to deliver the newest iteration of the Minnesota Vikings offense to the best of his abilities. 

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