EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said he thinks left guard Alex Boone will be able to play by Oct. 3 when Minnesota hosts the New York Giants.
Boone, who had an MRI on his hip Monday, played 19 snaps in Sunday's win over Carolina.
"He should be OK, I think," Zimmer said of Boone. "I won't know until we get out there and practice, but from what I understand, he's feeling better."
Jeremiah Sirles stepped in for Boone at left guard and played 35 snaps. Zimmer said he was pleased with how the third-year lineman from Nebraska fared against the Panthers.
"He plays a lot of positions," Zimmer said. "We gave him a lot of work at guard this last week anyway.
"But he went in there and did a really good job," he added. "He got to the second level, did a nice job in pass protection."
Zimmer also said he liked what he saw from second-year tackle T.J. Clemmings, who made his first start of the season and first ever at left tackle on Sunday.
Zimmer said Clemmings, "looked a lot better" than last season when he started every game at right tackle. He credited Clemmings for being technically sound against Carolina, noting that he carried his hands well and didn't lunge at opposing linemen.
"I thought he did pretty well," Zimmer said. "He did a nice job in pass protection, used his hands well.
"There were some really good things in the running game," he added. "Obviously there were some other issues, but I think for the first time it was pretty good."
Zimmer also said rookie tight end David Morgan suffered a knee injury. There is no timetable for Morgan's return.
A wide receiver update
Zimmer provided insight on a pair of Vikings wide receivers on Monday.
Rookie Laquon Treadwell was inactive against the Panthers and did not have a catch in the first two games of the season when he was active.
Zimmer said the 2016 first-round pick is still adjusting to playing in the NFL.
"Continue to do better in practice," Zimmer said. "His attitude is great, he's working (hard), he's just biding his time until he gets his opportunity, just like (Stefon) Diggs kind of was last year.
"I still think he's thinking a little bit about the number of steps to take on each route and things like that," he added. "Being at the right depth and things of that sort. But he's doing good, he'll be fine."
Diggs was inactive for the first three games of the regular season in 2015 but went on to lead the Vikings in catches (52) and yards (720).
All together now
Zimmer emphasized how much of a team win Sunday's victory in Carolina was.
He reiterated that point Monday when he mentioned how much of a role Minnesota's special teams units had in the 22-10 win.
Marcus Sherels gave the Vikings a jolt with a 54-yard punt return for a touchdown against Carolina. The score was his team-record fourth return for a touchdown.
Punter Jeff Locke had a strong day, as he recorded a 45.6 net average on seven punts and placed three of them inside the 20-yard line.
"For the most part on specials teams, I thought we did a good job," Zimmer said. "Locke punted them down there a bunch of times.
"We had a punt return that kind of changed the momentum of the game," he added. "It was good to go down there and win."
Zimmer also praised Cordarrelle Patterson, who had a pair of key plays as a gunner on punt coverage. Patterson had a solid tackle for a loss of 1 on one punt and downed another punt at the 2-yard line.
"I thought he did well," Zimmer said. "We practiced a little bit with it last week.
"With some of the heat things, (Vikings Special Teams Coordinator) Mike Priefer decided to put him in there and he did a nice job with it," he added.
Zimmer said Patterson's team-first attitude has been noticeable during the team's 3-0 start.
"I think he wants to play," Zimmer said. "I think he wants to do everything he can to get on the field."