MINNEAPOLIS - The Minnesota Vikings host the Atlanta Falcons at noon Sunday before heading into their bye week, and there were no surprises among inactives released 90 minutes before kickoff.
Dalvin Cook, Dru Samia, Holton Hill, Kris Boyd and K.J. Osborn were all declared out for Sunday’s game. Cook suffered a left groin injury on the first play of the second half in last Sunday’s 27-26 loss at Seattle. He came into the game leading the NFL in rushing, and now Alexander Mattison will get his first career start in Cook’s absence.
Samia won’t play at right guard Sunday after suffering a wrist injury. Samia had started the last four games, and played every offensive snap last week at Seattle. He struggled with four penalties, three that were accepted by the Seahawks. His absence means rookie Ezra Cleveland could get his first NFL start, or see his first live snaps of the season.
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The Vikings secondary has been thin most of the season, and Sunday won’t be any different. Holton Hill (foot) and Kris Boyd (hamstring) are both out, leaving Cameron Dantzler, Jeff Gladney and Mike Hughes to take the snaps in the defensive backfield. K.J. Osborn (hamstring) is also out for the second straight game, which means Ameer Abdullah and Chad Beebe are the likely candidates for kick and punt returns.
The Vikings are looking to head into their bye week 2-4, and keep their already slim playoff hopes alive. The game will go on after the Falcons suffered a scare with positive COVID-19 tests during the week, but they returned to practice on Friday and were given the all clear to play Sunday.