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Updated: August 22nd, 2011 5:05pm
Notebook: Vikings sign rookie Caleb King, await word on Kevin Williams

Notebook: Vikings sign rookie Caleb King, await word on Kevin Williams

by Tom Pelissero
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EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings didn't select anyone in the NFL's supplemental draft on Monday, but they liked one of the candidates enough to give him a free-agent deal.

Former Georgia running back Caleb King agreed to terms on a contract with the Vikings shortly after the supplemental draft's conclusion, two NFL sources said late Monday afternoon.

The deal is pending a physical on Tuesday, after which the Vikings would have to make corresponding move to open a spot on the 90-man roster.

King (5-11, 217 pounds) ran for 1,371 yards and 10 touchdowns on 255 carries (5.4 average) over three seasons with the Bulldogs. The 23-year-old finished spring drills as Georgia's starting running back, but he was ruled academically ineligible in early July and declared for the supplemental draft days later.

The Vikings appear to be set at halfback with Adrian Peterson, Toby Gerhart and third-down back/return man Lorenzo Booker. However, Gerhart is nursing a sore ankle and Achilles, and rookie combo back Matt Asiata remains sidelined by a hip flexor issue.

King's agent, Kevin Conner, said he heard drew interest from 10 to 15 teams after his client wasn't selected in the supplemental draft.

"Both Caleb and I felt this was the best opportunity to maximize his potential along with making the active roster," Conner said in an e-mail.

Coach Leslie Frazier confirmed the Vikings also discussed former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who was selected in the third round of the supplemental draft by the Oakland Raiders.

"He's an outstanding player, but I think someone took him," Frazier said. "Congratulations for him."

No word

Less than three weeks from the opener, Kevin Williams said the NFL still hasn't told him whether he'll have to serve his long-delayed StarCaps suspension to start this season.

But the veteran defensive tackle sounded on Monday as if he was ready to get the four-game ban over with, more than three years after his controversial positive test for a banned diuretic.

"It's time to get that thing out of the way," Williams said. "Hopefully, it turns out for the best. I think no guy wants to go through a suspension. But you have to be prepared if that be the case."

Williams may be looking at missed time regardless, depending on what a specialist determines is wrong with his ailing foot. Frazier said he expected the results of that examination to be available by Tuesday.

"I don't want to hear anything" about the suspension, Frazier joked. "Hear something in 2020. That'll be fine with me."

Together again

The return of receiver Percy Harvin and tight end Visanthe Shiancoe to practice means the Vikings likely will have all of their skill-position starters available for game action for the first time in the preseason on Saturday.

"I think it'll be great for us just to develop some continuity," Frazier said. "We've had some moments in practice where they've all been together, but to finally get them all together in a game where we have our full complement -- that's a good thing for our football team."

Coaches were expected to meet on Monday to discuss playing time, but it's expected the first unit will play at least the first half.

"We've got a lot of work, a lot of work to be done," Harvin said. "Anytime you can play and think you've got it all figured out, that's when you're going to lose. So, we've got a lot of work to do, still got a lot of time, so we're going to get it done."

Griffin progressing

Cornerback Cedric Griffin played only five snaps on Saturday in his first game action since his latest knee reconstruction, but that was enough time to make one play, deflecting a pass for Seahawks receiver Golden Tate on the game's first snap.

"They challenge him on that first play of the game with a play down the seam, and he makes a terrific play that a lot of guys wouldn't make," Frazier said. "It was great that he was able to get out there, and we'll give him a little bit more this weekend, we hope, and hopefully, he'll continue to progress, because if he's able to play, it's going to make us a much better team."

The Vikings remain unsettled at cornerback, in part because Griffin's recovery is ongoing and backup Asher Allen remains sidelined by a toe injury.

They held a workout on Monday for former Indianapolis Colts cornerback Kelvin Hayden, who has started 45 games over the past four seasons. But it did not appear any signing was imminent.

Quick hits

• Rookie CB Brandon Burton continued to work with the third-string defense on Monday. But Frazier praised the fifth-round pick's work in Saturday's exhibition, particularly his tackling in space. "That was a knock on him coming out of college, that he wasn't going to be an overly aggressive guy," Frazier said. "He's doing some things to kind of dispel that, and that's what we were hoping. He's got another big test this weekend, because we're going to try to get him out there on the field again and just see how he responds."

• Rookie QB Christian Ponder took second-team reps in Monday's practice, but Frazier said no decision has been made on who will be Donovan McNabb's top backup this week.

Tom Pelissero is Senior Editor and columnist for He hosts from 6 to 8 p.m. weeknights and co-hosts from 10 a.m. to noon Sundays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
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