Vikings sign DT Jimmy Kennedy

The Vikings signed defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy on Wednesday to help fill a void created by the four-game suspensions to Pat and Kevin Williams.

The Vikings didn't draft Jimmy Kennedy in 2003, opting instead for Kevin Williams with what was eventually the ninth pick in that draft, but they did sign Kennedy on Wednesday after Kevin Williams and Pat Williams were suspended for four games for violating the league's policy on anabolic steroids and related substances.

Kennedy wasn't on the field for the start of Wednesday's practice, but he did make it out on the field by the end of practice and took some snaps, head coach Brad Childress said.

"Just a guy that can play inside and can bring some explosive components and we're lucky that he's around at this point in the season," Childress said, adding that he might be able to give the Vikings some snaps on Sunday against Detroit.

Kennedy ended up being the St. Louis Rams' first-round pick (12th overall) in 2003 and started 72 games for them over the next four years. His first year in the league, Kennedy played under then-Rams defensive coordinator Lovie Smith, where he would have played in a similar defensive system as the Vikings employ.

Kennedy played three games with Chicago in 2007, where he was reunited with Smith, now the head coach of the Bears, and worked in the Tampa-2 system there as well. This year, Kennedy played six games with the Jaguars.

In his six seasons, Kennedy has played in 62 games with 30 starts and has 160 career tackles and five sacks.

Childress said Kennedy has played both nose tackle, Pat Williams' position and the three-technique that Kevin Williams plays.

"He's both play. He's played three, he's played shade. I haven't had a chance to sit and talk with him yet," Childress said immediately after Wednesday's practice.

Defensive tackles Ellis Wyms and Fred Evans are expected to start Sunday in Detroit.


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