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Saturday, October 4, 2008
Black and Blue all over: Henderson's future

Posted by's Kevin Seifert

Minnesota linebacker E.J. Henderson's left foot is so swollen that the team's medical staff hasn't been able to fully assess his condition, which includes two dislocated toes. That situation suggested a long-term absence from the lineup, and Saturday the Star Tribune reported Henderson will miss at least a month.

The absence is a huge blow for the Vikings, who consider Henderson a Pro-Bowl caliber linebacker and named him a defensive captain prior to the season. He'll be replaced by second-year player David Herron, but defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said Friday that strong-side linebacker Ben Leber will take most of the playcalls from the sideline.

Surgery is an option for Henderson once the swelling subsides, according to the Star Tribune's Judd Zulgad. In his previous five seasons, Henderson played in 79 of a possible 82 games.

Elsewhere around the NFC North on this fall Saturday: