Dixon to Start

One constant through the 2003 season has been having the same starting lineup at offensive line throughout the season. VU has been told that streak will remain intact Sunday.

When David Dixon pulled himself from practice Wednesday, there were concerns that the Vikings' streak of having the same five offensive line starters would be snapped. This comes a week after Bryant McKinnie kept us guessing about his availability for most of last week's Charger Week practices.

This time around, there wasn't nearly as much drama. Coach Mike Tice announced that Dixon will start Sunday after returning to practice Thursday.

With the Vikings hoping to run the ball more this week, look for Dixon to be a key to that effort, even if Lewis Kelly spells him for a series or two.

FRIDAY NOTES
* Daunte Culpepper completed every one of his passes with the scout team Thursday. Tice said he has never seen a QB complete every pass in a practice.
* The Raiders downgraded RB Charlie Garner from questionable to doubtful and it now looks like he might not play at all.
* Word out of Oakland is that Rich Gannon, who has a $7 million salary cap number next year, may be released when the season ends.
* In the last three games, the Vikings defense has allowed 1,359 yards and 101 points.

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