O-Line Together Again

For the first time in more than a month, the offensive line was back together as a single unit.

Aug. 1 was the last time before Wednesday that the entire Vikings offensive line had been together on the field. First it was Matt Birk's hernia injury. Then Bryant McKinnie's knee sprain.

That changed Wednesday as the Vikings had both of the their Pro Bowl-caliber linemen back and practicing on the field. The hope is that they won't miss a beat during the opener vs. the Cowboys.

The Vikings were one of the few teams in the NFL to have the same starting five on the offensive line for all 16 games last year.

While coach Mike Tice praised the job done by backup center Cory Withrow during Birk's absence, it's hard to replace an All-Pro regardless of who the backup is -- making the timing of the return additionally sweet as the games start "for real" this weekend.

THURSDAY NOTES
* Morten Andersen met the media and started off with a joke -- approaching the microphone and reporters and claiming "I never had sexual relations with that woman" (a reference to Bill Clinton's first post-Monica press conference).
* The plan is for Andersen to handle all kicking duties until the bye week. After that, Tice is apparently willing to back off his stand about having two kickers -- he plans to bring Travis Dorsch up from the practice squad.
* Former Viking Aaron Elling is expected to get a tryout with the Titans, who lost kicker Joe Nedney for the year (again) with a leg injury.
* The Vikings signed CB Earthwind Moreland to the practice squad Wednesday.

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