EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Phil Loadholt will miss the rest of the 2014 season, Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said Monday, a day after the right tackle suffered what was a diagnosed as a pectoral tear.
Zimmer said Loadholt is likely to have surgery on Friday.
"I think Phil is a great person," Zimmer said. "He's very conscientious, works hard, he's got a great heart. So, that's just part of football. Obviously we'll miss him but we're not going to let it hold us back from what we're trying to get done."
The injury to the sixth-year pro is the latest in a season that's seen several Minnesota players sidelined. Right guard Brandon Fusco made it through three games before a season-ending injury, and tight end Kyle Rudolph has played the past two games after missing the previous six games because of a sports hernia. Veteran quarterback Matt Cassel also suffered a season ending injury in Week 3, accelerating the timeline for rookie Teddy Bridgewater.
Zimmer said "everybody has injuries" and the Vikings can't be affected by the latest.
"That's just the way it goes," Zimmer said. "That's how things happen and you've just got to keep playing."
Mike Harris, who replaced Loadholt for the final nine offensive plays of the game Sunday, is likely the candidate to fill in for Minnesota down the stretch. Zimmer said rookie Austin Wentworth has been practicing at the position as well.
KALIL ON PENALTIES: At the other end of the offensive line, left tackle Matt Kalil said Monday that he was disappointed by having three penalties called on him against the Packers.
"You can go back and forth on the holding, I watch film, but a call is a call," Kalil said. "(The) hands to the face, (is) just things I've got to clean up. Me being the person I am and wanting to do the right things all the time, I'm not too happy about getting three penalties in a game."
Added Zimmer: "The biggest thing for him was the penalties this week I thought. The one facemask he had was the guy kind of dipped inside and his hand got sloppy and he grabbed the facemask. The one holding penalty on the first run in the second half probably could have gone either way. Penalties are killing us and we can't have penalties. We've got to continue to understand that. I know that he's fighting all of the time to do the best job that he can."
HEATING UP: The heating system the Vikings ordered for their practice field has arrived from England and been installed. The goal is to enable Minnesota to practice in the elements if it wants since the Vikings home games for the next two seasons are outdoors at TCF Bank Stadium while their new indoor stadium is under construction.
"I pulled in this morning and saw it there and said, 'Oh, man,' " Captain Munnerlyn said. "I'm ready for it though. This past Sunday the weather wasn't that bad at all. I didn't even have sleeves on. I was shocked at myself. It's a good think we'll get outside and get our minds right."
Munnerlyn, a native of Mobile, Ala., was fine in sleeves because the temperature Sunday was 49 degrees Fahrenheit, which was much warmer than the weather had been since Minnesota's bye week and the first snow of the season on Nov. 10.
Temperature isn't the only factor on deciding to practice indoors or outdoors, Zimmer said.
"Everything depends on the day. But yeah, we are prepared to go outside," Zimmer said. "If it's windy like it is today, we won't go out. If we can get out, we will get out."