Vikings And Packers Deal With Key Injuries This Week

Posted by Mike Wobschall on October 28, 2009 – 11:02 am

Both the Vikings and Packers will prepare for each other this week with questions surrounding a key member of their starting lineup. The Vikings will continue to assess CB Antoine Winfield’s status as he recovers from a foot injury and the Packers will be watching LT Chad Clifton’s recovery from a sprained ankle that has sidelined him since October 18 and that caused him to miss the October 5 game against the Vikings.

By definition, all starters are key members of the lineup. But given the results of their earlier matchup this season, there’s no denying the affect Winfield’s absence has on the Vikings and Clifton’s absence has on the Packers. Winfield led the Vikings in tackles with 9 and added an interception against Green Bay in Week 4. In that same game, the Packers were without Clifton and they gave up 8.0 sacks, including 4.5 to Jared Allen.

The Vikings defense, and specifically the secondary, played well without Winfield against the Steelers last week. QB Ben Roethlisberger was held to just 175 yards passing and the Steelers offense accounted for just 13 of the team’s 27 points. But you can be certain the Packers offensive staff is watching film of last Sunday’s game in an effort to combat the adjustments the Vikings defense has made in Winfield’s absence.

The status of Winfield and Clifton will be uncertain all week, with it being unlikely that either player will practice before Friday, if at all this week. Both teams are required to submit daily injury reports but they aren’t required to estimate the players’ chances of playing until after Friday’s practice.

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