Vikings' Dalvin Cook Ruled out vs. Chargers After Suffering Shoulder Injury

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 15, 2019

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook runs up field during the second half of an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)
Bruce Kluckhohn/Associated Press

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook suffered a shoulder injury Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers and will not return.  

Cook exited after nine carries for 27 yards on the day. The running back was listed on the injury report with a chest injury but fully practiced on Wednesday and Thursday.

Cook finally produced the breakout season the Vikings have expected since they selected him in the second round of the 2017 NFL draft. He topped 1,000 rushing yards for the first time after recording just 969 yards on the ground in 15 combined games over his first two seasons.

The 24-year-old Florida State product has always featured high-end ability, but injuries have held him back. He appeared in only four games as a rookie before suffering a season-ending torn ACL. He returned for the start of the 2018 campaign but sat out five contests with hamstring problems.

He's set a career high in games played this season despite chest and shoulder injuries.

Alexander Mattison would have likely received a lion's share of the work in the Minnesota backfield but is out with an ankle injury. Ameer Abdullah and Mike Boone will handle the workload in Cook and Mattison's absence.

Cook has emerged as one of the league's most valuable players when healthy. Durability may never be his best trait, but when he's on the field he's a dynamic weapon for the Vikings.