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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Greenway: ‘I’m Not Where I Need To Be’

By: Joe Nelson |

Mankato, MN – Fill in the blank: An injury to __________ would most debilitating to the Vikings in 2013.

The obvious answer is Adrian Peterson. Losing the MVP of the league would be a crushing blow to any team, but what if the best linebacker on the team went down?

Losing Chad Greenway to injury would force defensive coordinator Alan Williams to find a player to replace the Vikings’ five-time reigning leading tackler.

2012: 148 tackles (2nd in NFL)
2011: 154 tackles (3rd in NFL)
2010: 144 tackles (4th in NFL)
2009: 99 tackles
2008: 115 tackles
2007: 105 tackles
2006: Did not play

Since tearing his ACL on the opening kickoff of the first preseason game of his rookie season in 2006, Greenway has been Mr. Dependable for the Vikings. But entering his eighth season in the league, Greenway’s knee required a little cleanup last month.

He underwent successful arthroscopic knee surgery in June, and he’s not 100-percent healthy.

“I don’t think I’m quite where I need to be yet, honestly,” Greenway told KFAN-FM 100.3 on Monday. “I don’t feel in my mind I’m where I want to be, but I feel as camp goes I’ll get stronger and better.”

Greenway’s health, along with Erin Henderson’s first season at middle linebacker and Desmond Bishop’s ability post-torn hamstring are reasons why the Vikings’ linebacking unit has a lot of unanswered questions.

“Our room has probably gotten questioned more than anybody, and that’s okay. That’s understandable,” Greenway said. “At the same point, we have guys — young guys; old guys alike — that are just working together, trying to make our room better.”

“We want to just all get better, and we’re all working extremely hard. And I look to myself as being the oldest guy in that room as saying, ‘this is how I need to lead this group and show these guys how to do it.’ But at the same time, they’re obviously pushing me and I’m pushing them. It goes hand-in-hand.”

Greenway will be 100-percent healthy soon enough, but keeping him healthy for 16 games and beyond will be a must if the Vikings want to go far this season.

How far? Super Bowl?

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