Shutting down Vikings CB Cook an option

The Vikings are discussing several options for rookie cornerback Chris Cook, who continues to struggle with "dull pain" and inflammation in his surgically repaired knees.

When the Vikings dropped back in the first round of the 2010 draft, there was the feeling that they had the guy they wanted in Chris Cook. However, an injury-riddled rookie season has both the coaching staff and Cook talking about shutting him down for the rest of 2010.

In NFL terms, Cook is a commodity – a young player with promise. The Vikings had high expectations of Cook, which were only increased when he was the talk of training camp in Mankato.

But after suffering a pair of meniscus tears – one in each knee – the Vikings are contemplating sitting their prized rookie down for the rest of the season.

Cook, who said is hoping to play next week, was quick to admit that the prospect of closing down his rookie season is a distinct possibility – even if the coaching staff that does so isn't around the reap the ultimate benefit.

"You definitely have to be smart about it." Cook said. "I don't want to play for just one year. I don't want to keep forcing it and forcing it and then have a bigger issue pop up and then my career ends up getting shortened. God forbid. You have to be smart about injuries."

Head coach Leslie Frazier admitted that shelving Cook with four games to go is a possibility, saying that the coaching staff is considering a full shut-down as an option.

"We're discussing a lot of things with Chris and that is one part of the discussion," Frazier said. "He is a rookie. He is a guy we think has a great future with our football team. We're going through some different scenarios and trying to do what's best for him and the team as well."

Cook said his rookie season hasn't been what he anticipated, especially given the promise with which it began. He had some lofty goals in mind, but two torn meniscus tendons and "dull pain" and inflammation afterward scuttled those plans.

"I wasn't planning on this happening," Cook said. "In my mind, I would have been defensive rookie of the year with 10 interceptions. But it didn't go that way and, hopefully, when I get back, I perform at a high level.

SATURDAY NOTES

  • An interesting sidebar to Sunday's game may well have to do with the weather. Under league rules, visiting teams have to be in the city the day before the game. The Giants will likely not be able to get into the Twin Cities until sometime tonight, since Minnesota is getting blanketed with a snow storm that is likely going to restrict air traffic in and out of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

  • Cook and safety Tyrell Johnson (knee) have been ruled out for Sunday's game.

  • Percy Harvin is listed as doubtful with migraines. But, given the history of Harvin's headaches, they can arrive and disappear without warning.

  • Four other Vikings are listed as questionable – Brett Favre (ankle/chest/shoulder), Steve Hutchinson (thumb), Ray Edwards (ankle) and Joe Webb (hamstring).

  • The Giants will have issues remaining on their offensive line. OT Shawn Andrews has been ruled out with a back injury. Center Shaun O'Hara is listed as doubtful with a foot injury.

  • While the O-line is struggling, the wide receiver corps is likely to improve Sunday. While both Hakeem Nicks (lower leg) and Steve Smith (pectoral) are both listed as questionable, and one or both are expected to play.


    John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.

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