One of the main concerns for a good portion of Training Camp for the Minnesota Vikings has been the status of tight end Irv Smith Jr., who had thumb surgery a few weeks ago and has been sitting out ever since. Is he going to be ready for when the Vikings host the Green Bay Packers in about three and a half weeks?
According to his head coach, yes he will be.
Vikings’ HC Kevin O'Connell told reporters today that TE Irv Smith, who underwent thumb surgery earlier this summer, is on track to play in Week 1.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 18, 2022
On Thursday, head coach Kevin O’Connell told reporters that Smith is still on track to be ready for the season opener, which would be a huge boost to the Vikings’ offense.
As we’re well aware, Smith missed all of last season with a torn meniscus that he suffered at the end of the preseason. He was expected to have a big breakout season last year, and now that he’s back. . .or soon will be. . .the expectations for him are high again. Those expectations also happen to coincide with the final year of his rookie contract.
In Smith’s absence, the Vikings have had to delve into the depth at tight end on their depth chart, with Ben Ellefson and Zach Davidson seeing plenty of snaps in the team’s preseason opener. While it’s good for them to get opportunities to impress the coaches, I think we’ll all be a lot happier when Irv Smith Jr. is officially back on the field and catching passes from Kirk Cousins again.