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Vikings lose two starting offensive linemen to IR

Oct 2, 2022;  London, United Kingdom;  Minnesota Vikings offensive tackle Brian O'Neill (75) during the NFL International Series game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings placed right tackle Brian O’Neill and interior lineman Austin Schlottmann on injured reserve Tuesday.

O’Neill started all 16 games for the Vikings this season while Schlottmann has started the past four at center in place of the injured Garrett Bradbury.

Schlottmann sustained a fractured fibula and is done for the season. O’Neill (calf) will have to miss at least four games, meaning the Vikings would have to advance to the Super Bowl for him to play in the postseason.

The Vikings signed free agent linemen Greg Mancz and Bobby Evans to their practice squad.

O’Neill has started 75 of 79 games since the Vikings selected him in the second round of the 2018 draft. He earned his first Pro Bowl selection in 2021.

Schlottmann, in his first season with the Vikings, played in all 16 games this season, with the four starts. He played in 42 games (seven starts) for the Denver Broncos from 2019-21.

Chris Reed is set to get the start at center in Week 18.

Bradbury’s earliest return would be the playoffs after missing two games with a back injury, exacerbated by a car accident late last month.

The Vikings (12-4), the NFC North champs and current third seed for the NFC playoffs, play at Chicago (3-13) on Sunday. The Vikings could ascend to No. 2 by beating the Bears and a San Francisco 49ers loss at home to Arizona.

–Field Level Media