NFL teams have to trim their rosters to 75 players by 3 p.m. Central today, but the big cuts don't happen until Saturday.
The Vikings and the other 31 teams have to cut their rosters from 80 to 75 today and, while there aren't going to be many big names on the lists when they are announced sometime after 3 p.m. Central Time today, there may be several players that will be of use to other teams.
Loyalty isn't the highest in the NFL, but there is some respect given to veteran players that aren't going to make the final roster with their current clubs. There has been a standing practice that teams will allow veterans some extra time to hook on with another team, so there may be some recognizable names among the anonymous list of undrafted free-agent and practice-squad types.
The Vikings got a head start on trimming their roster reduction by cutting linebacker J Leman under the waived/injured provision. Leman missed most of training camp and didn't play in any of the team's three preseason games due to a turf toe injury. Leman was with the Vikings in 2008's training camp and was among the final round of cuts. He bounced around the league in 2009, spending time with the Panthers, Eagles and Chargers before joining the Vikings practice squad in December last year. After one week and with E.J. Henderson
's season-ending injury, Leman was promoted to the active roster.
Under the provisions of the injured/waived list, if Leman passes waivers, which is all but assured, the Vikings will have the option of negotiating an injury settlement or will place Leman on injured reserve, which would end his 2010 season.
With Leman's release, the Vikings need to cut four more players by this afternoon.
After Saturday's game, head coach Brad Childress hinted that the Vikings might consider playing their starters more than just a series in the final preseason game Thursday. At his press conference Monday, he backtracked a little on that statement, saying that the short week of preparation in between preseason games will likely limit what (if any) action veteran starters will see Thursday.
It would seem the NFL wants to get the preseason over with. After spreading the early preseason games around to give more national TV opportunities, all 16 of the final preseason games will be played on Thursday.
There are reasons for concerns that Brett Favre is already receiving injections in his ankle to relieve the pain, but Favre is a tough guy and this isn't all that unusual. What is unusual is that it is coming so soon into the season, which could end up playing a part in the Vikings' final roster decisions. If the team believes Favre may not be able to hold up the entire season, it could be reason enough to keep Sage Rosenfels and perhaps head into the season with four quarterbacks on the roster. It's still a deep long shot that will happen, but it's a possibility.
The Vikings will receive roster exemptions for Sidney Rice and Cedric Griffin, both of whom remain on the Physically Unable to Perform list.
Saints defensive line coach Travis Jones won't be around for the regular-season opener against the Vikings. He has been suspended by the team for 30 days without pay for his admitted role in a real estate scam.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for 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.