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Everson Griffen set to return for Vikings vs. Saints

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Everson Griffen is poised to make his game day return to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

The defensive end, who missed the last five games because of a mental health issue, is expected to play against the New Orleans Saints, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported. Griffen has practiced since Wednesday and was not listed on the Vikings' Friday injury report, indicating he will be active for the all-important NFC showdown.

Speaking to reporters Friday, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer wouldn't say if Griffen would be active for the game.

If Griffen does play, it remains to be seen how much playing time he would receive after sitting out since Week 2. The Vikings sent Griffen and his agent a letter in September stating that he was not allowed to return to the team facility until he underwent a mental-health evaluation. Griffen was cleared to return to the Vikings this week.

Griffen said he's been working out over the last month and that he's "able to play football" on Sunday.

"I'm just excited to get back here with my team and get back to the grind," Griffen said Wednesday. "It's been hard to be away but I'm happy to be back. It's a good feeling right now and I'm taking one day at a time and one thing at a time to get things back on track."

In other Vikings news, running back Dalvin Cook (hamstring), linebacker Anthony Barr (ankle), safety Andrew Sendejo (groin) and left guard Tom Compton (knee) will not play against the Saints. Left tackle Riley Reiff (foot) is doubtful, and cornerback Xavier Rhodes (foot) and nose tackle Linval Joseph (ankle, knee) are questionable.

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