Quarterback struggles and stalling offense has made 2013 a season to forget for the Minnesota Vikings, but they're poised to get a little stronger on defense.
Defensive back Josh Robinson was placed on injured reserve Saturday with a fractured sternum, while second-year safety Harrison Smith has been activated after sitting out two months with turf toe. He's on pace to play against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, giving the team a playmaker in the secondary.
Smith was on pace for a breakout season before the injury, amassing 34 tackles and two interceptions in five games. The Vikings will need all the defensive help they can get against Nick Foles and the vaunted Eagles offense.
Help on defense is welcome for Minnesota, but the team's offense could be decimated if running back Adrian Peterson is unable to play on Sunday.
Peterson is dealing with a sprained foot and is hopeful he can play. Head coach Leslie Frazier is waiting for a pre-game workout to determine his status. The veteran running back has no desire of being shut down for the season, despite the playoffs being out of reach and the series of injuries he's dealt with in 2013.
Kirk Cousins has taken over as quarterback for the Washington Redskins, and his first opportunity to start won't be easy without rookie tight end Jordan Reed.
Reed will miss his fourth straight game after sustaining a concussion in Week 10. He was a bright spot in a disappointing season, amassing 499 receiving yards before being injured.