Rudolph, Reiff doubtful for Vikings with ankle injuries
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings likely may be without a pair of important offensive players on Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Left tackle Riley Reiff (ankle) and tight end Kyle Rudolph (ankle) were listed as doubtful on the team’s official injury report Friday.
Coach Mike Zimmer didn’t think Rudolph would play, although he held out hope for Reiff.
“We have a chance,” Zimmer said.
Rudolph, who caught four touchdowns in his last three games, missed all three practices this week, while Reiff was a limited participant in Friday’s practice after missing Wednesday and Thursday. Reiff and Rudolph were both injured last Sunday in the 31-24 loss to the Carolina Panthers.
If Reiff misses his first start of the season, Rashod Hill will take his place at left tackle, making his sixth start of the year. Beginning in Week 10, Hill made five consecutive starts in relief of the injured Mike Remmers at right tackle.
The Vikings tight end situation is more complicated, since backup Blake Bell (shoulder) was placed on injured reserve Friday. Kyle Carter was called up from the practice squad to fill Bell’s roster spot and will be the second tight end behind David Morgan, who will likely start.
Carter will make his NFL regular-season debut.
“I’m just trying to do everything that the guys in front of me were doing,” Carter said. “Just trying to bring everything to the table, just be a balanced player and just help the team.”
Remmers (lower back) is poised to return for his first start since Week 8, and rookie center Pat Elflein (shoulder) is expected to play after missing the first game of his career last Sunday.
Cornerback Mackensie Alexander (ribs) will miss his second game of the season.