Roster Shuffling Follows Preseason Opener

The Vikings released one linebacker and will hold a tryout for his spot, while the offensive line is trying to keep a tight image. Meanwhile, the Vikings got some good news and some bad news on the injury front as a number of players missed Monday's practice.

Quincy Stewart was having a good training camp, but coach Mike Tice knew he wouldn't be able to keep the veteran linebacker.

On Monday, he released Stewart, giving him the opportunity to catch on with another team.

"If you feel you have a veteran player that you know is not going to make the team, you should release him, show some class and character instead of keeping him around as an insurance policy," Tice said. "We have a number of bright, young prospects who are ahead of him on the depth chart."

Stewart, a fifth-year player who had previous experience with San Francisco and the New York Jets, made three tackles at weakside linebacker in Friday's preseason opener against Kansas City.

He was also playing on four special-teams units, and Tice wanted to look at some younger guys in those roles.

"We have tremendous competition between eight or nine guys for that 53rd (roster) spot, which is truly just a special teams spot, and I needed to take a better look at them," Tice said.

"He understood; I explained it to the team. What it all boils down to is this is a game, but it's still a business."

Tice said he plans to have a tryout for three linebackers, with at least one being added to the roster.


The offensive linemen have been working with their hands bound together after Tice noticed that they weren't keeping their hands in when blocking against Kansas City.

"I've been harping on it for 10 days to get (the hands) tightened up, so I went to extremes, which was put them in straps and make them feel how it feels to have their hands in tight," Tice said. "I think they're aware of it, and they've got a long ways to go."

Tice still hasn't ruled out bringing back veteran guard David Dixon, but he feels the mistakes by the current group are correctable.


Center Anthony Herrera was hospitalized overnight with an infection in his leg, but Tice said Herrera was supposed to be released today. Herrera was spiked during Friday's game, and the wound became infected, spreading from his ankle up to his knee.

"It's a shame because I thought he played very well in the game (Friday), and I thought he merited getting a look with the first team," Tice said.

Rookie cornerback Adrian Ward left Mankato on Monday to attend a family funeral.

Rookie defensive lineman C.J. Mosley will leave Tuesday to attend a funeral.

Safety Willie Offord remains with his wife as the couple awaits the birth of their child.

Cornerback Fred Smoot and receiver Kelly Campbell went to the Twin Cities to have an MRI to determine the proper rehab schedule for their injuries. Smoot has a bruised knee, and Campbell has a sore quad muscle.

Rookie Dustin Fox, who has missed most of camp with a broken arm, has had additional surgery and could be place on the injured list.

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