Nov 16, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen (19) looks on in the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings activate WR Thielen from reserve/COVID-19 list

The Minnesota Vikings activated wide receiver Adam Thielen from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Wednesday.

The two-time Pro Bowl selection is expected to practice Wednesday.

Thielen landed on the list on Nov. 23, one day after catching eight passes for 123 yards and two scores in a 31-28 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. It was the 100th game of his NFL career.

He leads the Vikings in touchdown receptions (11) and ranks second in receptions (49) and receiving yards (646), trailing rookie Justin Jefferson (52 catches for 918 yards) in both categories.

Thielen, 30, has 372 receptions for 4,961 yards and 36 touchdowns since signing with the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2013. He topped 1,000 yards and made the Pro Bowl in both 2017 and 2018.

Minnesota (5-6) has won four of its last five games heading into Sunday’s game against the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars (1-10).

–Field Level Media

Aug 29, 2019; Orchard Park, NY, USA;  Minnesota Vikings running back De'Angelo Henderson (32) reacts to his touchdown run with teammate offensive guard Dru Samia (73) against the Buffalo Bills during the fourth quarter at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Vikings G Samia tests positive for COVID-19

Minnesota Vikings guard Dru Samia tested positive for COVID-19 and will not play Monday night in Chicago, NFL Network reported Sunday.

The Vikings (3-5) are conducting contact tracing to determine whether any other players will be sidelined against the Bears (5-4), per the report.

Samia, 23, started four games at right guard earlier this season but has been limited to special teams the past two weeks.

Samia appeared in just two games last season after being selected by the Vikings in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft out of Oklahoma.

–Field Level Media

Nov 1, 2020; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA;  Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) rushes for a second quarter touchdown against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: William Glasheen/Appleton Post-Crescent via USA TODAY NETWORK

Cook carries Vikings to victory in Green Bay

Dalvin Cook ran for 163 yards and scored four touchdowns, including three on the ground, to lead the Minnesota Vikings to a 28-22 victory at NFC North-leading Green Bay on Sunday, snapping the Packers’ eight-game winning streak in the division.

Back in the lineup for the first time since suffering a groin injury in a Week 5 loss at Seattle, Cook scored on runs of 21, 1 and 1 yards and also took a screen pass 50 yards for a score. Cook had 226 yards from scrimmage on 32 touches as the Vikings (2-5) played effectively on both sides of the ball following their bye week.

The Packers (5-2) lost for the second time in three games, as they were unable to sustain much offensive momentum after the game was tied 14-14 at halftime.

Aaron Rodgers connected with Davante Adams for first-half touchdowns of 5 and 1 yards, as the rivals both capitalized on each of their two full drives in the first 30 minutes.

Adams caught a third scoring pass from Rodgers, a 7-yarder with 2:42 to go, before Green Bay was successful on a 2-point conversion to draw within the final margin. The Packers got the ball back in the final minute, but DJ Wonnum sacked Rodgers and forced a fumble on the final play.

Rodgers was 27-for-41 passing for 291 yards and three touchdowns. Robert Tonyan had five receptions for 79 yards, Adams had seven catches for 53 yards while Jamaal Williams gained 75 yards on 16 carries.

Kirk Cousins completed 11 of 14 passes for 160 yards and a touchdown for the Vikings, who avenged a 43-34 home loss to the Packers in Week 1.

The game hinged on Green Bay’s failed fourth-down conversion attempt midway through the third quarter. With the Packers trailing 21-14 with the ball on the Minnesota 37, Rodgers’ deep pass for Equanimeous St. Brown down the right side of the field was incomplete, the fourth successive incompletion to thwart the drive.

Minnesota took over possession and wasted little time in taking control, marching 63 yards on four plays in 2:06. Cook punctuated the drive with a 50-yard catch and run, using savvy footwork and solid blocking for his fourth total touchdown of the game to give the Vikings a 28-14 lead.

–Field Level Media

Oct 11, 2020; Seattle, Washington, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) rushes against the Seattle Seahawks during the first quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings RB Cook (adductor) ruled out for Sunday

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook will not play Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, coach Mike Zimmer confirmed Friday.

The NFL rushing leader strained an adductor muscle in last Sunday’s loss in Seattle and has not practiced all week.

Minnesota has a bye week following their game against the Falcons, which gives Cook additional time to recover before a Nov. 1 NFC North showdown with the Packers in Green Bay.

Cook, 25, leads the league with 489 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns through five games.

The Vikings will turn to second-year back Alexander Mattison to make his first career start Sunday at home against the winless Falcons.

Mattison, 22, replaced Cook and ran for 112 yards on 20 carries in the 27-26 loss to the Seahawks. He also caught three passes for 24 yards.

Also out for the Vikings on Sunday: cornerback Kris Boyd (hamstring), return specialist K.J. Osborn (hamstring) and guard Dru Samia (wrist).

–Field Level Media

Oct 4, 2020; Houston, Texas, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (33) runs the ball for a touchdown against Houston Texans cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III (26) during the second quarter at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings drop Texans to 0-4 behind big day from Cook

Dalvin Cook rushed for 130 yards and two touchdowns while Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson each posted 100-yard receiving games as the Minnesota Vikings recorded their first victory of the season by holding on to defeat the host Houston Texans 31-23 on Sunday at NRG Stadium.

The Vikings (1-3) needed a last-minute replay reversal to seal the victory, as a 5-yard fourth-down touchdown pass from Deshaun Watson to William Fuller V with 1:15 remaining was ruled incomplete upon review. Minnesota ran out the clock to clinch the triumph.

Thielen (eight receptions for 114 yards and a touchdown) and Jefferson (four catches for 103 yards) teamed with Cook to give the Vikings their first game since 2000 with a 100-yard rusher and two 100-yard receivers. Kirk Cousins passed for 260 yards and a score for the Vikings.

The Texans dropped to 0-4 for the third time in franchise history, doing so previously in 2005 and 2008. Houston trailed 31-16 before mounting a furious comeback attempt, reversing course from a miserable first half where the Texans amassed 112 yards and trailed 17-6 at the intermission. Watson passed for 300 yards and two scores, one to Fuller (six catches, 108 yards) and a 24-yarder to Kenny Stills on fourth down that cut the deficit to eight points with 5:52 left to play.

The critical sequence unfolded midway in the third quarter when the Texans failed to cash in advantageous field position following an errant 55-yard field goal attempt from Vikings kicker Dan Bailey.

The Texans threatened immediately, with Watson completing a 43-yard pass to Fuller that set up first down at the Minnesota 8. But Houston was forced to settle for a 25-yard field goal that cut the deficit to 17-16, and the Viking fashioned a response, scoring a touchdown after covering 75 yards in eight plays.

Cousins and Jefferson connected for a 23-yard gain on 3rd-and-10 before Cousins hit Theilen for a 9-yard score that extended the Minnesota lead to 24-16 with 41 seconds left in the period.

The Vikings held defensively and extended their lead when Alexander Mattison scored on a 4-yard run with 10:50 to play.

–Field Level Media

Sep 8, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings outside linebacker Anthony Barr (55) reacts during the third quarter against the Atlanta Falcons at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings LB Barr out for season with torn pec

Minnesota Vikings outside linebacker Anthony Barr will miss the rest of the season with a torn pectoral muscle, coach Mike Zimmer announced Monday.

The four-time Pro Bowl selection sustained what was originally labeled a shoulder injury during the second quarter of Sunday’s 28-11 loss to the Colts in Indianapolis. He will be placed on injured reserve.

Including six tackles in the Week 1 loss to the Green Bay Packers, Barr has posted 423 tackles, 15 sacks, five fumble recoveries and two interceptions in 87 career games (all starts) since being selected with the ninth overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Barr also wears the headset and relays the defensive play calls for the Vikings.

Barr, 28, signed a five-year, $67.5 million deal with the Vikings in March 2019. He is due to earn a base salary of $10 million this season.

Rookie linebacker Troy Dye, a fourth-round pick from Oregon, replaced Barr but was briefly sidelined with an ankle injury.

Dye has played just 21 snaps on defense and 34 on special teams through two games for Minnesota (0-2), but could make his first start Sunday on the road against the Tennessee Titans (2-0) if healthy.

–Field Level Media