Vikes expect top two RBs to return

Updated: December 16, 2013, 6:59 PM ET
By Ben Goessling | ESPN.com

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- Running backs Adrian Peterson and Toby Gerhart both have a good chance to return to the Minnesota Vikings' lineup on Sunday in Cincinnati.

Coach Leslie Frazier said on Monday that he expects all of the players who missed Sunday's victory over the Philadelphia Eagles -- including Peterson and Gerhart -- to be ready this week.

The only exception, Frazier said, could be cornerback Xavier Rhodes, who sat out with a sprained ankle on Sunday. It might be a challenge for him to return to the practice field when the Vikings get back to work Wednesday.

"He's the one we may not be sure about today," Frazier said.

But Peterson and Gerhart seem likely to return, particularly after both had a shot to play on Sunday. Peterson told reporters "the decision was taken out of my hands" a week after he sprained his right foot in Baltimore. Both he and Gerhart worked out on Friday and Saturday, and Frazier said he was tempted to use them both, but decided to err on the side of caution.

He said on Sunday, though, that he expected Peterson back for the Bengals game.

"I would anticipate that [he'll play] with this week of rest and his groin [injury] should be better because of that as well," Frazier said after the game. "I would anticipate that he would be back on the field."

Without the two running backs, the Vikings relied on quarterback Matt Cassel, who threw for 382 yards in the team's 48-30 win over the Eagles. Running back Matt Asiata rushed for three touchdowns in the victory but gained just 51 yards on 30 carries.

Ben Goessling

ESPN Minnesota Vikings reporter

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