After running back Adrian Peterson a year ago, the Minnesota Vikings will have another player entering an offseason rehabbing a knee issue. This time it’s center John Sullivan, who reportedly underwent microfracture surgery on his left knee last week in Florida.
According to Tom Pelissero of 1500 ESPN-Twin Cities, Sullivan’s surgery was “relatively minor” as microfracture procedures go, which is obviously good news. He is facing 3-4 months of rehab, which will likely take him out of most of the Vikings’ offseason program, but all indications are he will be ready to go for the start of training camp in July.
Sullivan was a notable Pro Bowl snub this past season, his fifth in the NFL, as he was a key piece of an offensive line that helped pave the way for Peterson to get close to the single-season rushing record. His performance was not obviously affected by this injury, as he played every snap for the Vikings and was graded by Pro Football Focus.com as the top center in the league. Just when the knee issue first occurred or perhaps served to limit him in any capacity is unknown, but the fact Sullivan did not miss a snap is a testament to his toughness.
2013 will be the second year of the five-year, $25.1 million contract extension Sullivan signed with the Vikings in December of 2011, and his base salary is scheduled to be $3.15 million next season. There’s no reason for any concern about that long-term investment at this point, barring something unforeseen in his recovery this spring. If it is not already clear, Sullivan looks certain to maintain the run the Vikings have going with one of the top centers in the league anchoring their offensive line.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.