Cameron Smith Underwent Successful Open-Heart Surgery, Vikings' Mike Zimmer Says

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 25, 2020

Minnesota Vikings linebacker Cameron Smith works out during rookie minicamp at the NFL football team's complex Friday, May 3, 2019, in Eagan, Minn. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)
Jim Mone/Associated Press

Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said Tuesday that linebacker Cameron Smith underwent open-heart surgery Monday.

"Cam Smith had successful surgery yesterday," Zimmer told reporters. "We're happy about that. They were able to repair the heart, and he's in good shape."

Smith announced earlier this month he had tested positive for COVID-19. Upon further examination, doctors determined he would need surgery to repair a bicuspid aortic valve.

"There is a surgery that will allow me to continue to play football as soon as I am healed and cleared and I didn't think twice about going with that one," he wrote. "By no means am I ready to be done playing football, there is still so much more I want to accomplish on the field. Im going to attack this like everything else I have in life. Already looking forward to the comeback!"

Smith wrote that the surgery means he'll miss the 2020 season.

The Vikings selected the 23-year-old USC product in the fifth round of the 2019 draft.

They waived him last August as they finalized their roster for the season and then added him to the practice squad. He was promoted to the active roster in October before getting shuffled back to the practice squad three weeks later. Minnesota moved him back to the active roster Nov. 26, and he remained there for the remainder of the year.

Smith made five appearances as a rookie, finishing with six tackles.