Vikings Place Sidney Rice On PUP List; Officially Out At Least 6 Weeks

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Vikings Place Sidney Rice On PUP List; Out At Least 6 Weeks

The Minnesota Vikings made it official that Sidney Rice would be out for at least the first six weeks of the season after placing him on the Physically Unable to Perform list Tuesday.

ESPN 1500 explains the implications of the PUP list assignment:

At any time during a three-week window beginning Oct. 19, Rice can begin practicing. Once he does, another three-week window opens, by the end of which the Vikings must decide whether to activate Rice or moved him to injured reserve. So, the final deadline is in advance of the Vikings’ 12th game, Dec. 5 against the Buffalo Bills.

Given the nature of his injury and the recovery timeline, it remains to be seen what role Rice — who turns 24 on Wednesday — will be able to play if and when he returns to the active roster.

As long as Rice is on reserve/PUP, he doesn’t count against the Vikings’ active roster.

This isn’t breaking news by any means, as the biggest part of the story is that the Vikings will be able to carry someone else – Javon Walker? – on the roster until Rice is healthy.

The vikings also waived  receiver Marko Mitchell, tackle Bill Noethlich and injured linebacker J Leman to get to Tuesday's mandatory 75-player roster limit.

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Sidney Rice Blogs That Hip Injury Could Have Ended His Career

Sidney Rice has caught a lot of flak for waiting until the middle of the preseason to decide to have hip surgery that could leave the Minnesota Vikings without his services for eight weeks – and possibly until the end of the season.

However, according to Rice’s most recent entry on his official blog, Rice was facing the end of his football career if he had decided to hold off on surgery.

Once the doc got in there and checked everything out, he said having the surgery was the best move I could have made, so I don’t regret it now. He said it could have been much worse if I would have tried to play on it during the season. He said it could have been my last year of playing football, so I know I made the right decision.

Rice also believes that his recovery time will be quicker than most have suggested.

As for when I’ll be back, I’m not really sure but I’m aiming for being back on the field before midseason. I want to do as much rehab as I can as fast as I can without jeopardizing the injury or making it worse. Whatever the doctor says, I’m shooting for two weeks before that.

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Favre: 'It's Hard Enough To Play At 40,' But 'Tougher' To Play Without Sidney Rice

Earlier we reported that it didn’t seem Minnesota Vikings head coach Brad Childress was on board with Sidney Rice’s decision to have hip surgery at this point.

Now, according to ESPN 1500’s Tom Pelissero, we can count quarterback Brett Favre among those that would prefer to have Rice on the field when the regular season begins.

“Without Sidney, it sure makes it tougher,” Favre said. “But going into the season last year, no one expected the season that Sidney was going to have. So, maybe there’s another guy that can step up and do that.”

Favre mentioned Bernard Berrian as a possibility, but had plenty to say regarding Rice.

“It’s hard enough at 40 to play. You take a guy out that had roughly 90-something catches and was obviously pretty productive … but there’s more guys on this team, too.”

Speaking for the first time since Rice underwent surgery on Monday that’s expected to sideline him at least eight weeks, Favre said he stayed in contact with Rice throughout the offseason and “really felt like, at some point during training camp, he would be able to go. Obviously, that’s not the case. But I was probably like most people — I was pretty optimistic that he would be OK.”

Of course, Favre knows that without a reliable receiving corps that the Vikings running game will have to step up.

“Sidney or no Sidney … our running game needs to be more productive and controlling throughout the season, especially with the schedule we’ve got.”

He added: “All that’s easier said than done, but I’m happy to be here. I have no idea what will happen this year. It’s unfortunate with Sidney. Hopefully, we’ll get Percy (Harvin) back. But it can’t change the way I approach the game or my feelings towards it. I’d love to have (Rice), but … we go to bat with who we’ve got and try to make the most of it.”

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