The wait to see Michael Pierce in action with the Vikings has been delayed further after he suffered a calf injury while training, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
Rapoport says Pierce's status for the start of training camp later this week is in doubt, but the injury isn't serious enough that it would keep him out of the season opener Sept. 12 against the Bengals.
The Vikings report to training camp at TCO Performance Center in Eagan July 27, with the first full team practice happening Wednesday, July 28.
Pierce signed with the Vikings prior to the 2020 season, then opted out as a health precaution during the height of the coronavirus pandemic. The Vikings have big expectations for the interior defensive line this season with Pierce and 2021 free agent signee Dalvin Tomlinson plugging the middle with more than 600 pounds of mass.
Minnesota finished 29th overall with 29.7 points allowed per game and ranked 27th with 393.3 yards allowed per game last season.
Raising Minnesota's expectations on defense even further is the return of linebacker Anthony Barr and defensive end Danielle Hunter, along with numerous free agent acquisitions: safety Xavier Woods, defensive tackles Sheldon Richardson and Tomlinson, and cornerbacks Patrick Peterson and Bashaud Breeland.