WR Percy Harvin has missed more than a week of practice after the death of his grandmother. He was expected to return on Monday, but he wasn't there for the morning practice. Plus, get practice notes from the first session.
continues to miss practice time while attending to personal business after the death of his grandmother.
"Percy's dealing with some personal issues. Just as with any of those guys that we're missing, obviously we'd like to have them, but we kind of try to look on the positive side of it," offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said. "There's a lot of young guys and even some veterans that are getting an opportunity to show us what they can do. That's what's going to happen in a game. There are only so many guys. If one guy's not there, you're starter's not there, someone's got to step up."
In Harvin's absence, and without Sidney Rice
, who is on the physically-unable-to-perform list with a hip injury that hasn't allowed him to practice since the start of camp, Greg Lewis
and Jaymar Johnson
have gotten extended time with the first-team offense, joining Bernard Berrian
The Vikings have also got a good look at Logan Payne
, who spent time with Seattle last year, but with no Brett Favre
(did not report), no Harvin and no Rice, the complexion of the offense has changed.
"All we can do is go with the guys that are out there. There's other guys getting the opportunities and they're making the most of the opportunities," Bevell said. "It may even give them a chance to make the team because it gives us a good look at them. We try to put that spin on it."
As for Harvin, Bevell had no update on his expected return, although indications late last week were that the 2009 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year would be back on Monday. Even if he would return in the next day or two, it's uncertain how much playing time he would receive in the preseason opener Saturday in St. Louis.
"I don't know where he's at in terms of his conditioning," Bevell said. "We didn't have him out here that long anyway (before he left), but Percy takes really good care of his body. I know he's a hard worker. We'll just have to see when he comes back."
MONDAY MORNING PRACTICE NOTES
Joining Harvin with absences were QB Brett Favre (did not report), WR Sidney Rice (PUP), CB Cedric Griffin (PUP), LS Cullen Loeffler, RB Darius Reynaud, LB J Leman, G Anthony Herrera and TE Visanthe Shiancoe.
Adrian Peterson continues to ramp up his comeback from a tight hamstring that limited him during the first week of camp. He took first-team reps during all portions of the Monday morning practice.
Tarvaris Jackson will start on Saturday night, but the timing of when certain players will enter the game hasn't been decided yet.
Ray Small, Marcus Sherels and Lito Sheppard took turns returning punts.
Without Loeffler, the field goal team took a hit. John Sullivan filled in as the long snapper and skipped a couple balls back to holder Chris Kluwe. Ryan Longwell missed only one kick, but a couple of them were obviously affected by the snap and hold and one of them ended with Kluwe raising up and scrambling before throwing it away incomplete.
Jarmarca Sanford and Tyrell Johnson continue to rotate in with the first-team defense and E.J. Henderson is seeing increased reps there.
FB Naufahu Tahi continues to battle through a calf injury and was wearing a sleeve on his right calf. Sullivan was also wearing a sleeve on his right calf for part of practice.
WR Logan Payne and WR Taye Biddle were the main second-team receivers with Greg Lewis and Jaymar Johnson getting more first-team work because of the absences of Harvin and Rice.
With Herrera out, rookie Chris DeGeare was getting the majority of the first-team reps.
Asher Allen was getting some looks with the first-team defense.
During seven-on-seven work, TE Garrett Mills made a nice catch on a throw from Tarvaris Jackson.
CB Lito Sheppard was looking for an offensive pass interference penalty on a wobbly pass thrown by QB Joe Webb intended for WR Marko Mitchell. Mitchell ended up playing defender against Sheppard because of the errant pass.
WR Bernard Berrian dropped a perfect pass from Jackson on a deep route to the end zone in which CB Antoine Winfield was a half-step behind.
The team worked on third-and-long situations for a portion of practice, but both Jackson and Webb took touch sacks early in their series. LB Chad Greenway got Jackson and LB Kenny Onatolu got to Webb. DE Ray Edwards also got to Jackson later in his first series.
Greenway also had a would-be interception go through his hands on a Jackson pass intended for TE Jim Kleinsasser.
During that period, the defense mixed it up with a three-man line and an extra defensive back.
Mitchell made a number of nice sliding catches during the "special categories" portion of practice.
CB DeAndre Wright had an interception on a badly underthrown passes from Webb intended for Logan Payne. Webb also muffed a handoff to Ian Johnson that ended up on the ground. Ryan Cook dove on it for the recovery.
Biddle took a hard shot from LB Jasper Brinkley when the receiver was up in the air trying to make a catch. It looked like Biddle took the hit to the ribs and stayed on the ground for about a minute before walking off under his own power.
QB Sage Rosenfels drew two defensive linemen offside with a hard count on separate occasions. DT Tremaine Johnson and DE Ray Edwards were the victims.
The Vikings won't start their regular game-week preparation for the preseason opener until later this week.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.