Specialty teams haven't been so special lately

By Dave Campbell

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Vikings made more gaffes on special teams on Sunday -- they had a punt blocked as well as a field goal blocked for the second straight week.

Against Seattle, the Vikings fumbled two kickoffs that set up Seahawks touchdowns.

Against Buffalo, kicker Doug Brien -- who was later cut -- missed two extra points and two field goals in a game the Vikings lost in overtime. They also gave up a kick return for a touchdown to the Bills in that game.


YOU AGAIN?: The Vikings have several players familiar to Atlanta fans. Free safety Ronnie Bradford, linebacker Henri Crockett and defensive lineman Chuck Wiley were all Falcons last year.

The Vikings also have two rookies, linebacker Nick Rogers and wide receiver Kelly Campbell, who played at Georgia Tech, which is in Atlanta.

Rogers had one of Minnesota's two sacks, and Crockett -- who also forced and recovered a fumble -- had the other. Bradford had the Vikings' only interception.

INJURIES: Bryant McKinnie came down with a stomach virus Saturday night and missed parts of the game. He was doubled over a trash can next to the Vikings' bench on two occasions. ... Everett Lindsay started at right guard in place of David Dixon (sore hip flexor) for the Vikings. This was Dixon's third missed start in six seasons. All three absences have come in the last two years. ... WR Kelly Campbell sprained his right foot in the third quarter. ... Michael Bennett rushed for 86 yards despite a sprained ankle. ... WR Cedric James was inactive again with a sprained ankle.

EXTRA POINTS: With James still out, Tyrone Carter returned kickoffs for the first time this year. He ran back five kicks for 111 yards. ... Former quarterback Warren Moon was on the field before the game.

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