With 13 days to spare before the the Vikings begin the regular season against the Atlanta Falcons, cornerback Mike Hughes was activated from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list Monday.
Hughes, a first-round pick in 2018, will help solidify Minnesota's cornerback depth. Xavier Rhodes and Trae Waynes are the top two corners on the team, with Hughes and Mackensie Alexander expected to play significant roles in the secondary this season.
Hughes hasn't participated in any team drills or preseason games yet, so it's unclear if the Vikings have plans to play him much in Week 1. It's also unclear if the Vikings plan to play him at all in Thursday's preseason finale at the Buffalo Bills.
Either way, Hughes' return is music to head coach Mike Zimmer's ears. Zimmer was critical of the secondary in Minnesota's 20-9 preseason victory over the Cardinals last weekend.
"Actually in that game, I probably wasn’t happy after the game, but they actually played pretty well," Zimmer said Monday.
"We had some situations, a couple third downs that we weren’t tight enough on receivers in there and then we misfit the screen one time. We had a miscommunication on one deep ball. We’ve got to play better on the backend but as far as guys knowing what to do and playing the right plays and playing the run, things like that, it was pretty darn good."
Hughes hasn't played since suffering a torn ACL in Week 6 of his rookie campaign last year.