The Minnesota Vikings placed cornerback Mike Hughes on injured reserve and re-signed veteran corner Marcus Sherels on Friday, two days before their NFC wild-card contest against the New Orleans Saints.
Hughes is dealing with a neck injury. In addition, cornerback Mackensie Alexander was ruled out Friday due to a knee injury.
Sherels spent eight full seasons with the Vikings, making a huge impact as a specialist, including returning five punts for touchdowns.
Sherels signed with the Saints as a free agent last offseason but was released on Sept. 1. The Vikings resigned him three-plus weeks later and he played in three games before being released on Oct. 22.
Sherels signed with the Miami Dolphins in early November and played in five games before again being released. He was on the field for just one defensive snap with Minnesota earlier this season but he is well-versed in the club’s defense, which surely factored in Friday’s signing.
Hughes had one interception in 14 games this season. Alexander has one in 13 contests.
Also receiving an injury designation on Friday was defensive end Ifeadi Odenigbo (hamstring), who is listed as questionable.
For New Orleans, cornerback Eli Apple (ankle) and fullback Zach Line (knee) were ruled out on Friday. Apple was injured in Week 16 against the Tennessee Titans and missed the season finale, while Line is missing his second straight game and fifth of the season.
Vonn Bell (knee) will return after a three-game absence and fellow safety Marcus Williams (groin) is back after missing one game. Star receiver Michael Thomas (hand) and running back Dwayne Washington (knee) are also fit to play.
Thomas set an NFL record with 149 receptions while finishing with 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns.
Minnesota running back Dalvin Cook (shoulder) is slated to return after a two-game absence. He ranks 10th in the NFL with 1,135 rushing yards. His backup, Alexander Mattison (ankle) is also ready to play after missing three games.
Star linebacker Eric Kendricks (quadriceps) is also set to play after missing the regular-season finale against the Chicago Bears. Also ready to play are safety Jayron Kearse (foot), cornerback Xavier Rhodes (ankle) and defensive tackle Shamar Stephen (knee).
–Field Level Media