The Minnesota Vikings cornerback suffered the unspecified injury on the first day of organized team activities last week and tried to play through it. But an MRI earlier this week revealed an issue that required the boot but likely won’t require surgery.
“It happened actually the first day of OTAs and I kept practicing on it and didn’t know it,” he said. “I tried to practice on Tuesday and couldn’t run. I was like, ‘What’s going on?’ I had to get an MRI and they sat me down for a little bit. Hopefully I’ll be ready for minicamp.”
That would allow Munnerlyn to leave Minnesota after the June 16-18 minicamp without having to stick around for part of the break before training camp for rehabilitation.
With Munnerlyn’s injury and Xavier Rhodes attending his son’s graduation, the Vikings had veteran free-agent acquisition Terence Newman in at left cornerback and Josh Robinson at right cornerback in the base defense at Thursday’s practice. Jabari Price and rookie Trae Waynes got work in the nickel defense.
“Competition brings out the best in everybody. I’ve been competing since I’ve been in the NFL,” Munnerlyn said. “… I know everybody in the room, they want to play so you’ve got to bring your best each and every day at practice and especially in the preseason. Competition always brings the best out in everybody.”
Defensive coordinator George Edwards said Munnerlyn’s injury was “nothing major,” and Munnerlyn said no surgery is expected and “better not be planned.”
The Vikings signed Munnerlyn last year as a free agent with the expectation that he would be their nickel cornerback, but he ended up winning the starting job and sliding inside for the nickel defense.
This year, he said all the returning cornerbacks are feeling better with a year in Mike Zimmer’s defense.
“It’s great knowing the scheme and knowing what he expects out of everybody and knowing this team,” Munnerlyn said. “It’s definitely a good feeling to just come out here and know what’s going on. Last year, everybody was running around (like) a chicken with his head cut off last year and didn’t know what we were doing and trying to feel each other out. This year I think everybody got it and everybody knows what to expect.”