He had an MRI on Monday, which Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said “ went rather well. “Zimmer followed up by saying, ‘We’ll see how he does this week,’ but a later report from NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero was more encouraging, indicating that Cook avoided serious injury, although the team can be cautious with a game against the Falcons 0-5 in Week 6 and their time off in Week 7.
The injury initially forced Cook out of Sunday’s game and undergo a dressing room assessment, propelling substitute Alexander Mattison to first place running back for the Vikings, who deemed Cook doubtful to return. The Pro Bowler actually returned to the sideline – and then to the field – later in the third quarter, but not for long. Mattison quickly took over the full workload from the running back, with Cook retiring to the sidelines after just one more play. Coach Mike Zimmer said this afterward Cook was unable to play during the injury. If he has to run out of time, it is assumed that Mattison will lead the backfield with Michael Boone behind him.
A 1,000-yard rusher in 2019, Cook entered Sunday night’s affair as the NFL’s main running back for four weeks, with 424 yards and six touchdowns under his belt. Fresh out of a five-year, $ 63 million contract extension signed in September, he’s been the centerpiece of Minnesota’s offense for the past two years, scoring 13 touchdowns, a career-high in 2019.
Injuries, however, are no stranger to the 25-year-old’s back. Cook missed 19 games combined between 2017 and 2019, including 12 as a rookie and five in his second season. If he ends up running out of time in the Vikings’ backfield, the team would count on Mattison, their 22-year-old former third round, as well as reserve Mike Boone and veteran fullback CJ Ham.