Vikings QB Christian Ponder limited in practice because of bruised elbow
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EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings injury report has a new and unwelcome addition on it.
Quarterback Christian Ponder was limited in practice Wednesday because of a bruised throwing (right) elbow that he suffered in last Sunday's victory over Green Bay, according to coach Leslie Frazier. Frazier did not seem overly concerned about Ponder's health or his ability to start Saturday night's first-round playoff game against the Packers at Lambeau Field.
"Christian has some soreness in his elbow, so we limited some of his reps," Frazier said. "I think he'll be fine. He just has to get some work in (Thursday). We'll see how much he progresses, but it doesn't seem like it should be something that would hinder him come (Saturday). But we need to ramp it up a little bit (Thursday), so we'll see where he is."
Ponder was injured late in the second quarter when Packers strong safety Morgan Burnett came free and hit the quarterback as he made an ill-advised throw that popped into the air on second-and-9 from the Vikings 41-yard line. The ball was up literally up for grabs but ended up falling into the arms of Vikings receiver Jarius Wright for a 17-yard gain.
Ponder downplayed the injury on Tuesday when asked how the elbow felt.
"It's good. It's fine. It's whatever," he said. "It's something that will be fine and get it ready to go."
As for the Vikings' other injuries:
Backup linebacker Tyrone McKenzie did not practice again Wednesday and his left arm remains in a sling. "His shoulder is to the point where I don't know if he's going to make it (for Saturday)," Frazier said. McKenzie's loss will impact the Vikings on special teams.
Running back Adrian Peterson was held out of practice for the second day in a row but that was because the Vikings want to get him some rest. Having Peterson sit out practice for a few days has become the norm. Peterson, who is listed with an abdominal issue, is expected to get some work on Thursday. That will be the Vikings' last full practice before Saturday's game.
Cornerback Antoine Winfield (broken hand) did not practice again Wednesday but Frazier plans to get the veteran some work on Thursday. "We think he'll make it," Frazier said. "He's making some progress, and has a lot less pain than he had a week ago at this time. So we'll get him some more work Thursday."
Safety Harrison Smith practiced Wednesday and did well, according to Frazier. Smith suffered a shoulder stinger late in last Sunday's game but is listed on the injury report with a knee problem.
Defensvie end Brian Robison (shoulder) practiced again on a limited basis Wednesday and should be fine to play Saturday. Robison returned last weekend after missing a game because of the injury suffered in Week 15 in St. Louis.
The Vikings' injury report included five players who did not miss any time on Wednesday. The five were defensive end Jared Allen (shoulder), cornerback A.J. Jefferson (ankle), defensive end Geoge Johnson (quadriceps), punter Chris Kluwe (left knee) and right tackle Phil Loadholt (knee)