EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — The Vikings have ruled two starters out against Green Bay due to knee injuries, defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd and cornerback Xavier Rhodes.
They're still trying to be secretive about their starting quarterback for today, even though all signs have been pointing toward Sam Bradford making his debut. Coach Mike Zimmer declined Friday to confirm his decision, after Shaun Hill took the snaps in the season opener.
"It is … ," Zimmer said after practice with mock suspense, "we'll find out Sunday."
The coach said he believes Bradford is ready to start.
"He could," Zimmer said, before flashing a sly smile. "Shaun's ready, too."
The Vikings acquired Bradford nearly two weeks ago in a trade with Philadelphia for two premium draft picks, including their first-round selection in 2017, but Hill started the opener at Tennessee. The 15-year veteran fared relatively well in the 25-16 victory, completing 18 of 33 passes for 236 yards without a sack or a turnover, but Bradford was obviously not brought in to be a backup.
"He comes in pretty early in the morning and stays late," Zimmer said. "He's worked enough to get ready."
Coaches and players have raved about Bradford's ability to be a quick study in the offense.
"I think it gets better every day," Bradford said earlier this week.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy even said he's expecting Bradford to start in what will be the first regular season game at U.S. Bank Stadium.
"He's getting a chemistry with the receivers, the tight ends, the backs," offensive coordinator Norv Turner said. "That's the hardest thing."
COLTS: Outside linebacker Trent Cole didn't travel with the team and will miss today's game at Denver with a back injury. Cole didn't practice all week and was listed as doubtful for the game. The team had already ruled out starting cornerbacks Vontae Davis with an injured ankle and Patrick Robinson with a concussion. Starting safety T.J. Green also won't play after spraining his right knee in last week's loss to Detroit.
RAVENS: Clarence Brooks, who served as a defensive line coach for 11 years, has died at the age of 65. The team announced that Brooks died Saturday in Weston in Broward County. He had esophageal and stomach cancer.