The Vikings have activated rookie quarterback Kellen Mond off of the Reserve/COVID-19 list, the team announced on Tuesday.
Mond spent the required ten days on the list after testing positive for the coronavirus on Saturday, July 31. It was his positive test that caused Kirk Cousins and Nate Stanley to miss five days each as close contacts, sparking the drama over Cousins being unvaccinated and how that could affect the Vikings this season.
It's good to hear that Mond has recovered and is ready to return to practice. Last week, offensive coordinator Klint Kubiak said Mond was "sick," insinuating that he was dealing with some mild symptoms from COVID. Clearly, he must've passed through the NFL's protocols by getting over those symptoms and testing negative the requisite number of times.
Mond has a lot of catching up to do. Missing ten days and eight practices as a rookie QB who already needed plenty of coaching and development was far from ideal, but at least he's back now. Mond's absence created an opportunity for Jake Browning to essentially wrap up the backup QB job for at least the start of the 2021 season, and he took full advantage of that chance. Now the rookie will look to get back on track.
The Vikings changed Tuesday's practice to a walk thru. We'll see how many live reps Mond gets in the joint practices with the Broncos on Wednesday and Thursday, and if he's deemed ready to see some action during Saturday's preseason opener. It's possible that he won't make his preseason debut until the following Saturday (August 21) against the Colts.
Minnesota doesn't need to make a corresponding move at this point. Mond's activation gives them 89 players on the 90-man roster, with wide receiver Myron Mitchell the lone player still on the Reserve/COVID list. However, it seems unlikely that the Vikings will keep five quarterbacks, so I'd expect either Nate Stanley or Danny Etling to be waived in the near future.
It'll be interesting to see if this situation — with Mond testing positive and missing ten valuable days of training camp — motivates him to get vaccinated. Perhaps he'll make that choice in order to avoid a repeat in the future. Or perhaps, like Lamar Jackson, testing positive for COVID won't do anything to change his stance on the vaccine.
Thanks for reading. Make sure to bookmark this site and check back daily for the latest Vikings news and analysis all season long. Also, follow me on Twitter and feel free to ask me any questions on there.