Aug 14, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders place kicker Daniel Carlson (2) celebrates with Las Vegas Raiders long snapper Trent Sieg (47) and Las Vegas Raiders punter AJ Cole (6) after making a field goal against the Minnesota Vikings during a preseason game at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Three QBs lead Raiders past Vikings

Three quarterbacks combined to throw for 181 yards on 19-for-27 passing to lead the Las Vegas Raiders to a 26-20 preseason win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday in Paradise, Nev.

Jarrett Stidham got the start under center for Las Vegas, completing 10 of 15 passes for 68 yards. He also added a rushing touchdown before turning things over to Nick Mullens, who threw for 94 yards and a touchdown to give the Raiders a 16-6 lead early in the third quarter. Chase Garbers finished things off, going 2 of 3 for 19 yards.

Minnesota utilized just two quarterbacks, with Sean Mannion starting the game but Kellen Mond the more productive of the pair. Mond racked up 119 passing yards and two touchdowns on 9-for-14 passing. Albert Wilson was on the receiving end of both scores, hauling in a 2-yard catch in the third quarter before finding the end zone from 20 yards out in the fourth.

The Vikings pulled within three on Wilson’s first touchdown, but Las Vegas rookie running back Brittain Brown scored a 1-yard rushing touchdown and Daniel Carlson put a 47-yard field goal through the uprights to give the Raiders a 13-point lead that the Vikings couldn’t come back from.

–Field Level Media

Jul 29, 2022; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook (4) looks on during training camp at US Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Preseason notes: 13 Vikings won’t play vs. Raiders; 49ers hurting too

The Minnesota Vikings announced on Sunday that the team would be missing 13 players for the preseason opener against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Among the notable scratches are running back Dalvin Cook, cornerback Patrick Peterson, quarterback Kirk Cousins, wide receivers Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen, tight end Irv Smith and safety Harrison Smith.

Most of those players are being held out without reported injuries, but a few of them have notable ailments.

Cousins was previously ruled out after testing positive for COVID-19, which head coach Kevin O’Connell announced Friday.

Smith had right thumb surgery Aug. 2 that continues to keep the veteran tight end out.

Guard Chris Reed was signed this offseason to provide depth along the offensive line, but he is also dealing with injury, according to reporting from the Minnesota Star-Tribune, as are wide receiver Thomas Hennigan and defensive end Jullian Taylor.

Cousins, 33, is coming off a season in which he passed for 4,221 yards, 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions on a 66.3 completion percentage in earning his third Pro Bowl selection.

Smith, 24, has 66 career receptions for 676 yards and seven touchdowns in two NFL seasons.

–The Vikings may have company with their next opponent in regards to challenging roster navigation.

San Francisco 49ers offensive lineman Daniel Brunskill suffered a hamstring injury against the Green Bay Packers Friday that is expected to keep him out a few weeks, the team confirmed Saturday.

Brunskill, 28, has started every game at right guard for the 49ers the last two seasons, though he was moved to center this offseason to compete for the starting center job in place of the retired Alex Mack.

Without Brunskill, the middle of the 49ers offensive line takes on a dramatically inexperienced look, which is a less than ideal situation for second-year quarterback Trey Lance to try to operate behind.

Jake Brendel, the other candidate at center, has just three starts in his career.

Aaron Banks, the likeliest starter at left guard, got just five snaps last year as a rookie.

And an actual rookie, Spencer Burford, is slotted in at right guard.

Overall, Brunskill has started 40 of 47 games in his three-year career.

–Field Level Media

Jul 27, 2022; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings QB Kirk Cousins tests positive for COVID-19

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins tested positive for COVID-19, head coach Kevin O’Connell said Friday.

The team sent Cousins home from training camp on Thursday with an undisclosed illness.

Cousins, who missed a game late last season after a positive test, will not play in Sunday’s preseason opener at Las Vegas.

Kellen Mond and Sean Mannion are competing for the backup role. Both figure to see plenty of action against the Raiders.

Cousins, who turns 34 on Aug. 19, is entering his fifth season with the Vikings and 11th overall. He passed for 4,221 yards, 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions in 16 games last season.

Overall, he has thrown for 32,593 yards, 223 touchdowns and 91 picks in 125 games (120 starts) with Washington (2012-17) and Minnesota.

The NFL stopped its COVID-19 protocol in March but still follows CDC guidelines that call for five days in isolation after a positive test.

–Field Level Media

Jul 29, 2022; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) performs a drill during training camp at US Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings send QB Kirk Cousins (illness) home from training camp

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins was sent home from training camp with an undisclosed illness, coach Kevin O’Connell told reporters on Thursday.

Cousins missed a walk-through practice in the early afternoon at Eagan, Minn. The Vikings also were slated to hold a full practice later Thursday.

O’Connell said the team wasn’t prepared to say if Cousins had COVID-19.

“We’re still in that process of trying to go through all that,” O’Connell said, “and make sure first and foremost: ‘What are you feeling? What’s going on?’ And then going through our in-house process to make sure that if that does end being (COVID), we’re on top of it.

“If not, there’s still some other stuff going around that we want to make sure that we’re being smart about for the other 90 players and the coaches.”

Cousins missed a game late last season after testing positive for COVID-19.

The NFL stopped its COVID-19 protocol in March, but is still following CDC guidelines that call for five days in isolation after a positive test.

Kellen Mond and Sean Mannion are competing for the backup spot behind Cousins. Both quarterbacks figure to see plenty of action during Sunday’s preseason opener against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Cousins, who turns 34 on Aug. 19, is entering his fifth season with the Vikings and 11th overall. He passed for 4,221 yards, 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions in 16 games last season.

Overall, he has thrown for 32,593 yards, 223 touchdowns and 91 picks in 125 games (120 starts).

–Field Level Media

Dec 9, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings tight end Chris Herndon (89) and Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Joe Schobert (93) and cornerback Cameron Sutton (20) in action at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: TE Chris Herndon expected to sign with Saints

The New Orleans Saints are expected to sign free-agent tight end Chris Herndon, multiple reports said Tuesday.

Herndon, 26, played in 16 games (five starts) for the Minnesota Vikings last season, catching four passes for 40 yards and one touchdown.

He played in 33 games (25 starts) for the New York Jets over the previous three seasons, with 71 receptions for 796 yards and seven TDs.

A fourth-round pick by the Jets out of Miami (Fla.) in 2018, Herndon is coming off a four-year contract worth approximately $3.2 million.

–Field Level Media

Aug 21, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; Denver Broncos tight end Shaun Beyer (88) scores a touchdown after making a reception against Seattle Seahawks cornerback Will Sunderland (42) during the fourth quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings sign TE Shaun Beyer, place two on PUP list

The Minnesota Vikings signed former Iowa tight end Shaun Beyer on Monday.

Beyer, 24, joined the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent and spent last season on the practice squad. He was released on May 13.

Beyer caught 18 passes for 275 yards and one touchdown in 35 games for the Hawkeyes from 2017-20.

Minnesota also placed wideout Blake Proehl and linebacker Ryan Connelly on the Physically Unable to Perform list.

Veterans report to training camp for the Vikings on Tuesday. Minnesota opens the season at home against the NFC North rival Green Bay Packers on Sept. 11.

–Field Level Media

Going Camping: Minnesota Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings have had back-to-back losing seasons and decided that a change at head coach and upper management might be the remedy for the lack of success.

Quarterback Kirk Cousins re-signed under first-time head coach Kevin O’Connell and a flurry of smaller moves might just be enough to put the Vikings atop the division for the first time since 2017.

Training camp location: Eagan, Minnesota
TCO Performance Center
Rookie report date: July 24
Veteran report date: July 26

Key acquisitions: LB Jordan Hicks, DT Harrison Phillips, DE Za’Darius Smith, CB Chandon Sullivan, WR Albert Wilson, OL Jesse Davis
Key losses: LB Nick Vigil, TE Tyler Conklin, S Xavier Woods, DT Michael Pierce, OG Dakota Dozier

Head coach Mike Zimmer and general manager Rick Spielman were fired back in January, marking the beginning of a new era in Minnesota. Kevin O’Connell took over as head coach in February, while Ed Donatell was named defensive coordinator and Mike Pettine was brought in as assistant head coach among a handful of other changes to the coaching staff. The Vikings were able to swipe defensive end Za’Darius Smith and cornerback Chandon Sullivan from NFC North rival Green Bay, but did lose safety Xavier Woods.

Consistency is key for Minnesota, especially under center. If Kirk Cousins plays at the level he’s capable of from start to finish, the Vikings are in a prime position to contend with the Packers, who took a step back this offseason.

–WEEK 1 IN FOCUS

Vikings vs. Packers 4:25 p.m. ET
Line: Packers -2 (FanDuel)
Total: 48.5

Green Bay is the favorite primarily due to its defense, which is projected to be among the best in the league, and that MVP quarterback that Minnesota loves to hate. If the Vikings can wear down the Packers’ secondary, it won’t be easy for Green Bay to match points due to its new-look offensive unit.

–BACK ON TOP

Being in a division with the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions means the Packers are really the only thing holding Minnesota back from a division title. But Green Bay’s offense, specifically its passing game, is not even close to what it was just a season ago. The Vikings sit at +300 (FanDuel) to come out on top in the NFC North ($100 bet would net $300 profit), and if there’s any year they could do so, it’s this one.

–Field Level Media

Jun 8, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) looks on during mandatory mini camp at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Jefferson: Davante Adams is NFL’s best WR … for now

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson recognized Davante Adams as the best at his position in the NFL. Well, for the time being.

Jefferson praised the Las Vegas Raiders wideout during a recent interview with Complex.com before adding that he likely will take his place atop the league by the end of this upcoming season.

“I’ll say after this year I’ll be the best receiver in the NFL,” Jefferson told Complex.com. “I definitely have to give it to Davante Adams as of now, him being so crazy and dynamic on the field. His route running is crazy, so I definitely have to give it to him right now, but I’m pretty sure after this year, it’s going to be me.”

Jefferson, 23, is off to a flying start to begin his NFL career.

He posted a then-rookie-record 1,400 receiving yards in 2020 before erupting for 108 catches and 1,616 yards in 2021. His receiving yardage total last season was better than that of Adams (1,553) and trailed only Los Angeles Rams star Cooper Kupp (1,947). Kupp, who was named the NFL Offensive Player of the Year, finished 18 yards shy of breaking Hall of Fame member Calvin Johnson’s single-season receiving yards record in 2012.

“I think I have to do it three years in a row for everybody to believe so,” Jefferson said. “Some people don’t think that after two years you deserve to be at the top of the league. And then me, I feel like I’m going to surpass 1,600 yards too. So I think that I’ll become the best receiver after this year.”

Adams, 29, is a two-time All-Pro and five-time Pro Bowl selection.

–Field Level Media

Nov 28, 2021; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Albert Wilson (2) reacts as he takes on the field prior the game against the Carolina Panthers at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Vikings sign WR Albert Wilson to 1-year deal

The Minnesota Vikings signed free agent wide receiver Albert Wilson to a one-year contract, ESPN reported Tuesday.

Specific contract terms were unknown for the seven-year NFL veteran wideout, who caught 25 passes for 213 yards without a touchdown in 14 games (five starts) for the Miami Dolphins last season.

Wilson, who turns 30 in July, reportedly worked out for the Vikings on Tuesday along with fellow veteran Dede Westbrook, per multiple reports.

The Vikings are Wilson’s third team since signing with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2014 as an undrafted free agent out of Georgia State. Wilson spent his first four years with the Chiefs before inking a three-year, $24 million contract with the Dolphins before the 2018 season.

Wilson played three seasons in Miami, opting out of the 2020 season because of COVID-19 concerns.

In his NFL career Wilson has caught 218 passes for 2,499 yards and 12 touchdown catches in 89 games (38 starts).

–Field Level Media

Nov 1, 2020; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA;  Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) scrambles under pressure from Minnesota Vikings cornerback Jeff Gladney (20) during the third quarter at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Cardinals CB Jeff Gladney killed in car accident

Arizona Cardinals cornerback Jeff Gladney was killed in a car accident early Monday morning. He was 25.

His agent, Brian Overstreet, confirmed his death to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

“We are devastated to learn of Jeff Gladney’s passing. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and all who are mourning this tremendous loss,” the Cardinals said.

Pro Football Focus reported that Gladney and a 26-year old female passenger died in a two-vehicle crash in Dallas.

The Minnesota Vikings selected Gladney, a TCU product, with the No. 31 overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft. He played in 16 games, starting 15, and made 81 tackles, had three passes defensed and forced one fumble in 2020.

The Vikings released him last August following his indictment in Texas on a felony assault charge in a domestic violence case. He sat out the 2021 season, and in March, a jury in Dallas found him not guilty.

The Cardinals signed him to a two-year deal following his acquittal and earlier this month they were excited about his arrival.

“We got an extra first round-pick in free agency,” said Dru Grigson, the Cardinals’ director of player personnel on the Big Red Rage radio show in April. “(He is) incredibly quick-footed, highly instinctive player.

“We’re getting a starter in our building without having to waste any draft capital.”

Condolences poured in on social media Monday.

“Lost my Brother, my best friend, my right hand man… ain’t too much more I can take man damn!” Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jalen Reagor, a teammate of Gladney at TCU, wrote on Twitter. “R.I.P Jeff Gladney, brother watch over me please.”

–Field Level Media