The Minnesota Vikings are one banged up team heading into their game Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers as they will not only be without their starting quarterback, but a starting cornerback and safety as well.
There was heavy speculation throughout the week that quarterback Christian Ponder (rib) would not play Sunday because of a rib injury that he suffered last week and he was ruled out on the Friday injury report after practicing on a limited basis on both Wednesday and Thursday. With Ponder now out, backup quarterback Matt Cassel will get the start.
Also ruled out on Friday were cornerback Chris Cook (groin), safety Jamarca Sanford (hamstring) and TE Rhett Ellison (knee). Cook and Sanford are both starters.
Cornerback A.J. Jefferson (ankle) practiced fully on Friday after being limited Thursday and he is listed as probable on the final injury report. He will most likely start in place of Cook.
Running back Matt Asiata (hamstring), defensive tackle Kevin Williams (knee), long snapper Cullen Loeffler (neck) and linebacker Erin Henderson (heel) are all listed as probable as well after practicing fully during the Friday session.
Running back Adrian Peterson (not injury related) practiced fully Friday after being limited by the Vikings coaching staff on Thursday and he too is listed as probable on the final injury report of the week.