John Sullivan said he appreciated Ndamukong Suh's halftime apology from a low block on Sullivan's left knee, but the Minnesota Vikings center feels fortunate to escape with only a bruise.
"It looked like it could have led to a pretty serious injury. I feel like I'm pretty lucky today to be relatively unscathed," Sullivan said Monday, walking through the locker room without a noticeable limp.
Sullivan was hurt when Detroit Lions linebacker DeAndre Levy intercepted a deflected pass and returned it to the end zone. However, the would-be touchdown was called back because Suh, who has been fined and suspended before for his on-the-field actions, dove at Sullivan's left knee as he was trailing Levy by at least five yards. Sullivan ended up on the ground grasping at his left knee.
The NFL said it is reviewing the play for potential discipline to Suh.
"I think guys get caught up in the play sometimes and sometimes things happen," Sullivan said. "It's hard to even remember what you do when you get caught up in the moment. I appreciate the fact that he said something to me."
Suh told reporters after the game that he talked to Sullivan and indicated everything between them was good.
"He apologized and said there was no intent to injure," Sullivan said. "It's fine."
Sullivan didn't miss a snap in Sunday's game and is expected to practice this week, both he and Leslie Frazier said.
"You just hate to see guys get hit below the waist," Frazier said. "You just know that that can result in serious injury."
STILL CONFIDENT IN PONDER
Despite QB Christian Ponder throwing three interceptions and fumbling an exchange with Adrian Peterson after Ponder was tripped, Frazier said there was plenty blame to be shared for Sunday's 34-24 loss to the Detroit Lions.
"We didn't play as well as we needed to play as a team to win this game. It wasn't all Christian," Frazier said. "There were some things that he would like to do better, but there are a lot of guys when they take a look at this tape, they're going to see it wasn't just Christian. We've got to play better as a team."
In addition to Ponder's issues, Peterson ran for a 78-yard touchdown, then had his next 17 runs net only 15 yards. The offense converted only 2 of 10 first downs, and the defense surrendered 28 first downs and 469 yards of total offense to the Lions.
So Frazier said he would tell Ponder what he told the rest of the team.
"We've got to learn from this ballgame and some of the things that occurred when you're on the road and how you have to win on the road," he said. "He's got to move on from it because we're going to be in a similar situation next week. You've got to learn from it and just get ready to go. We've got to find a way to get better and find a win."
A WEEK 2 ‘MUST-WIN?'
DE Brian Robison is feeling the urgency of the situation after the Vikings started the regular season with a loss to an NFC North team and going on the road again in Week 2 for another divisional game at Chicago.
"Bottom line is we don't want to go 0-2 in the division," Robison said. "This is a very important game this week. I know Coach Frazier doesn't want me to say it, but in my mind it's a must-win game this week."
Tim Yotter is the publisher of 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.
Sullivan ‘lucky' to be ‘relatively unscathed'
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