Vikings TE Irv Smith Jr. easing way back from knee inujury

Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell is putting his team through the paces this spring as the team’s new head coach. One of the main storylines is tight end Irv Smith Jr.’s health.

Smith Jr. last saw the field on August 27 last year during a pre-season game vs. the Kansas City Chiefs. Smith Jr. left the game after having two catches for 39 yards. A knee injury derailed his 2021 season, but now Smith Jr. is working hard to get his starting job back.

“Irv (Smith Jr.) is working out on the side. We’ll defer to our doctors on how much work he’ll put in right now. We’ll work on having a good plan for him,” said Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell.

**To watch Kevin O’Connell’s full press conference from Tuesday, CLICK PLAY ABOVE***

Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter participated in the workout and had no limitations. He missed 10-games last year with a pectoral injury. New Vikings linebacker Za’Darius Smith was also involved in Tuesday morning’s workout. He missed most of last year with Green Bay with a back injury.

O’Connell is encouraging his team to be more involved in meetings and communicating in those meetings. O’Connell said he wants quarterback Kirk Cousins to have more input on a daily basis.

“In the quarterback room the guys talk a lot. The players talk to us and it feels like interactive football,” O’Connell added.