Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan suffers setback, season likely done

Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan had a second surgery on his back recently after suffering a setback while lifting weights about 10 days ago.

Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan isn’t expected to play again this season after he suffered a setback about 10 days ago while lifting weights, requiring a second back surgery in the last two months.

Sullivan had surgery to repair his back during the preseason and was placed on injured reserve/designated to return, but he is likely to go on season-ending injured reserve after the latest incident.

“We don’t know when he’ll back or if he’ll be back,” head coach Mike Zimmer said Monday, labeling his chances of returning this year as “probably minimal.”

“It was disappointing. He was doing really, really good and all the sudden he had a little mishap so he had to have another deal done.”


Sullivan underwent lumbar microdiscectomy surgery prior to the regular season and was placed on injured reserve/designated to return. His recent surgery was also to his back.

 Joe Berger has been starting at center since Sullivan’s first back issue cropped up in training camp.

“I think he’s done good,” Zimmer said of Berger. “One of the things we tried to emphasize this last week with the offensive line was keeping our pad level lower and I thought we improved this week doing that and consequently we were lower on our play-action passes, which helped to get some guys open down the field and give Teddy a little bit more time. As far as Joe specifically, I thought he’s done a good job. He’s getting guys for the most part in the right place. We’ve had a few mishaps here and there where we’ve had the wrong assignments, but overall he’s done a good job.”

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