Stringer Laid To Rest

Seven days after being rushed off the field at Minnesota State University by ambulance, the heart-wrenching saga of Korey Stringer ends today with his burial in his hometown of Warren, Ohio.

The Vikings 2001 season will not be the same -- there's no way it can be -- in the aftermath of the tragic loss of Korey Stringer. Not only did the team lose a vital player on and off the field, but the remaining players have seen their preseason laid to waste as well, losing out on training time and a chance for younger players to make an impression.

While Stringer will never be forgotten, today will likely mark the end of his loss being foremost on the minds of coaches and players. Stringer will be buried today in Warren, Ohio, and beginning tomorrow the Vikings will return to full practice sessions as usual in anticipation of Saturday's preseason opener with New Orleans.

While there is difficulty in forcing the team to go on, it is believed that the burial of Stringer will serve as at least a physical sign that he is gone and that the team must return to business -- whether they want to or not.

* There was a running bet between VU staffers and a few of our readers as to who would be the first of the Dennis Green haters in the media that would take the first shot at the coach for somehow being responsible for the death of Stringer. It didn't even take a week. It didn't even require Stringer to be allowed to rest in peace. Green's non-willingness to open up medical personnel to the media jackals came back to haunt him Monday, as a columnist for the Star-Tribune veiled the need to get autopsy results with his usual cheap shots at Green. Stop the clock. It didn't even take one week for the wolves to get back on the scent of Green.
* Full autopsy results won't even be available for a week or more, which makes the latest rants even more curious. There has been no word that anyone has yet requested that the information be blocked and, if it is, it could only come from Stringer's family -- not the Vikings.
* Green, Mike Tice and a handful of players are attending today's funeral in Ohio. The rest of the team scheduled a short morning practice and brief special teams practice this afternoon.
* Former Stringer teammate Terry Glenn, who is appealing a four-game suspension from the league, left Patriots camp Sunday to attend the funeral today.
* Former Viking Jeff George is scheduled to have an MRI on his throwing arm, which has experienced tendinitis all of training camp.

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