COMMENTARY | The Minnesota Vikings completed the final cuts in an effort to get down to the required 53-man roster.
Here is a full breakdown, including the 53-man roster, cuts from Saturday, waiver claims and more.
Current Minnesota Vikings 53-man roster:
Running Backs (4)
Adrian Peterson, Toby Gerhart, Matt Asiata, Zach Line
Wide Receivers (5)
Greg Jennings, Jerome Simpson, Cordarrelle Patterson, Jarius Wright, Joe Webb
Tight Ends (3)
Kyle Rudolph, John Carlson, Rhett Ellison
Offensive Linemen (8)
Matt Kalil, Charlie Johnson, John Sullivan, Brandon Fusco, Phil Loadholt, Jeff Baca, Joe Berger, J'Marcus Webb
Defensive Linemen (9)
Brian Robison, Kevin Williams, Letroy Guion, Jared Allen, Everson Griffen, Sharrif Floyd, Fred Evans, Chase Baker, George Johnson
Chad Greenway, Erin Henderson, Desmond Bishop, Marvin Mitchell, Audie Cole, Larry Dean, Gerald Hodges, Mike Mauti
Defensive Backs (10)
Chris Cook, Josh Robinson, Xavier Rhodes, A.J. Jefferson, Marcus Sherels, Harrison Smith, Jamarca Sanford, Mistral Raymond, Andrew Sendejo, Robert Blanton
Blair Walsh, Jeff Locke, Cullen Loeffler
To get down to the required 53-man roster, the Vikings released the following players Saturday: TE Colin Anderson, RB Joe Banyard, S Brandan Bishop, OL Travis Bond, CB Brandon Burton, WR Stephen Burton, DT Everett Dawkins, S Darius Eubanks, CB Bobby Felder, TE Chase Ford, OL Brandon Keith, DT Anthony McCloud, LB Tyrone McKenzie, OL Kevin Murphy, DT Spencer Nealy, DE D'Aundre Reed, WR Rodney Smith, WR Adam Thielen, DE Collins Ukwu.
Both Brandon Burton and Stephen Burton were claimed off waivers. Brandon Burton was claimed off waivers by the Buffalo Bills, while Stephen Burton was claimed by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
With the cuts made, the Vikings also announced seven players that will be on the team but won't count against the 53-man roster. Those players include: G Seth Olsen (IR), FB Jerome Felton (suspension), T DeMarcus Love (suspension), WR Greg Childs (PUP), and DT Christian Ballard (left squad), CB Bobby Felder (IR), and DE D'Aundre Reed (IR).
Both Bobby Felder and D'Aundre Reed were waived by the Vikings during final cuts, but no team claimed either one and the Vikings were able to place them on injured reserve.
The final step for the Vikings was to sign eight players to the practice squad. The Vikings announced the following players are currently on the 2013 practice squad after clearing waivers: RB Joe Banyard, G Travis Bond, DT Everett Dawkins, TE Chase Ford, T Kevin Murphy, WR Rodney Smith, WR Adam Thielen, and DE Tristan Okpalaugo.
The biggest surprises in terms of cuts were probably wide receiver Stephen Burton, the Vikings' seventh-round draft choice from 2011, as well as special teams stud Tyrone McKenzie. McKenzie led the Vikings in special teams tackles last year, but wasn't as productive as a backup linebacker. Burton, on the other hand, had one glaring mistake in the third preseason game against the 49ers. Burton was running a slant route when he randomly stopped his route short, resulting in a Christian Ponder interception.
The Vikings' practice squad is full of young potential talent. It was surprising to see Rodney Smith pass through waivers without being claimed, but the Vikings are lucky enough to have the 6-foot-4-inch receiver on their practice squad.
Running back Matt Asiata making the team over Joe Banyard might have been the only true surprise as far as the 53-man roster is concerned. Banyard had 116 all-purpose yards in the Vikings' final preseason game. That said, Asiata can serve as a fullback while Jerome Felton sits out the first three games serving his suspension. Asiata is also more valuable in the special teams aspect.
Troy Kropog was originally on the Vikings' 53-man roster until they claimed J'Marcus Webb from the Bears.
Dennis Parsons is a Minnesota-area sportswriter covering the Minnesota Vikings for Vikings Central. He previously covered all Minnesota professional sports teams for Minnesota Sports News Nightly . You can email him at email@example.com or follow him on twitter @Parsons_VC.
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