A series of mismatched reports about the severity of Dalvin Cook’s shoulder injury emerged on Monday afternoon. After NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the Minnesota running back tore his labrum during Sunday’s game, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said that diagnosis was inaccurate and that the Pro Bowler was considered day-to-day.
A follow-up report indicates what that might mean for Cook’s next few weeks.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Vikings expect their star running back to miss at least the next two games. That would mean the 26-year-old will be sidelined for this upcoming Sunday’s matchup with the Detroit Lions and the following Thursday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Schefter reported that Minnesota hopes Cook will be able to return exactly three weeks from today on Dec. 20 against the Chicago Bears.
Vikings’ RB Dalvin Cook (shoulder) is expected to miss at least the next two games – Sunday at Detroit and the following Thursday against Pittsburgh – with the hope being that he can return the next week for the Monday night Dec. 20 game at Chicago, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 30, 2021
It’s been widely reported that Cook suffered a dislocated shoulder the Vikings’ 34-26 loss to the Niners. However, it still remains unclear exactly what the extent of the injury is past that. Whatever the actual ailment is, Cook was visibly in a lot of pain this past weekend as he had to be carted off near the end of the Vikings loss.
The bottom line is that Minnesota will need to adjust for at least the next few weeks while Cook recovers. It’s brutal timing for the 5-6 Vikings who are fighting for one of the final wild card spots in the NFC.
Thankfully for Zimmer and the rest of the Minnesota offense, Alexander Mattison has proven himself as one of the most capable backups in the league. In 2021, the third-year ballcarrier has 315 rushing yards, 149 receiving yards and two total touchdowns.
Mattison could be in for a huge afternoon in just six days time when the Vikings take on the winless Lions in Detroit.