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Vikings Sign Running Back Lorenzo Booker

December 7, 2010

Although an official announcement from the Vikings is yet to come, interim head coach Leslie Frazier confirmed that the team has indeed signed running back Lorenzo Booker. Booker comes to the Vikings by way of the United Football League (UFL). Frazier told reporters yesterday that he sees Booker as a third-down back.

“I’m hoping that he can help us in third-down situations,” said Frazier. “I think he can be a plus for us. He’s done a good job over in the UFL, making some plays, and we’re going to try to see where we can utilize him during this season.”

The Vikings initially worked out Booker last month, but balked at paying the UFL’s transfer fee of $150,000. When the UFL reduced the fee to $25,000, the Vikings made their move. Booker was originally a third-round draft choice of the Miami Dolphins in 2007. Booker recently made waves in the UFL for sitting out his team’s final game in protest of the high transfer fee. Apparently his tactic worked because Booker has now signed with an NFL team.

The Vikings have not announced a corresponding roster move, and they have a few options. Jeremy Fowler of the St. Paul Pioneer Press believes that running back Albert Young or wide receiver Hank Baskett could be candidates to be waived. However, with Adrian Peterson still nursing an ankle sprain and Toby Gerhart with a minor hamstring tweak, the Vikings may play it safe and keep all four running backs on the roster.

Another possibility would be to end a player’s season early by placing them on injured-reserve. This option has garnered little discussion, but the Vikings have a pair of players who have missed time with injuries. Defensive end Ray Edwards has a high ankle sprain, and injuries of this type always seem to take longer than expected to heal. Additionally, rookie cornerback Chris Cook hasn’t practiced in almost a week. Cook has been plagued by knee problems all season and missed last Sunday’s game due to swelling in both knees.

The Vikings have no media access on Tuesdays, but the players and reporters return to Winter Park on Wednesday. Either the team will release an official roster statement on Tuesday or we will simply have to wait and see who is not at practice on Wednesday.

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