Linebacker Anthony Barr suffered a torn pectoral muscle in the Vikings’ loss at Indianapolis on Sunday and will be out for the remainder of the season.
Barr left in the first half of Sunday’s game and coach Mike Zimmer revealed the extent of the injury during his Zoom call with reporters on Monday. Barr will be placed on injured reserve to create a roster spot for the Vikings.
The Vikings have started the season 0-2 for the first time since Zimmer became coach in 2014.
Barr, 28, was taken ninth overall in the first round of the 2014 draft, making him the Vikings’ first-ever pick under Zimmer. “Anthony was our first draft pick that we had when we came here,” Zimmer said. “A big, integral part of the defense. Good leader, great guy. It’s tearing him up inside that he’s not going to be able to play, but it is what it is and we’ve got to move on.”
Afternoon Judd: Anthony Barr’s season is finished. The Vikings’ direction has never been more clear. pic.twitter.com/x7Ld3kz6P6
— SKOR North (@SKORNorth) September 21, 2020
Barr miss four games in his rookie year but hasn’t missed more than three games in a season since. Barr played in 14 games in 2019, finishing third on the Vikings with 79 tackles and adding 1.5 sacks, seven tackles for a loss, four passes broken up, one interception, one forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He will finish this season with six tackles in two games.
Barr appeared set to leave the Vikings to sign with the New York Jets after the 2018 season, but had a change of heart and returned to Minnesota for less money. He signed a five-year, $67.5 million deal that included $33 million in guarantees with the Vikings in March 2019.
The Vikings now have only two healthy linebackers (Ryan Connelly and Troy Dye) behind starters Eric Kendricks and Eric Wilson. The team almost certainly will have to make a move this week to add depth to the position. Linebackers Blake Lynch and Hardy Nickerson are on the team’s practice squad.
The Vikings also signed defensive tackle Abdullah Anderson to their practice squad. He was released
from the Bears’ practice squad this month. Anderson signed with Chicago as an undrafted free agent in 2018 out of Bucknell and spent his rookie season on the practice squad before appearing in six games last season.