Questions Answered: Hitman Status, Darrisaw as the Real Deal, Where Was Cine?

The following questions are about current Minnesota Vikings topics, answered by PurplePTSD. Today is the September 26th edition, addressed in a from-the-hip fashion. If you have questions, please email them to

Also, please note: These are opinion-based responses. Some answers will be incorrect from time to time. But we’ll try to keep that to a minimum.

Q: Will Harrison Smith be ready for Week 4 versus the New Orleans Saints?

Questions Answered: Contingency Plan for Hitman, Pleasant Surprise, Reagor's Usage
Jun 8, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

A: Yes. Head coach Kevin O’Connell confirmed it on Monday.

Thankfully, backup safety Josh Metellus filled in admirably, telling an 82.7 grade from Pro Football Focus. A score like that is Hitman-esque. But with Metellus, that performance tier may not be sustainable.

It’s a full go for Smith in England.

Q: Is it safe to say Christain Darrisaw is the real deal at left tackle?

Sep 19, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive tackle Christian Darrisaw. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports.

A: Yes, probably.

We added probably onto all dealings with Vikings left tackles because of the cautionary tale provided by Matt Kalil a decade ago. However, Kalil’s struggles began in Year Two, and Darrisaw is improving in his sophomore campaign.

The Vikings coaching staff is high on Darrisaw, pundits agree, and his PFF resume echoes the same sentiment. Darrisaw is a stud, and Rick Spielman finally nailed an LT decision before he exited.

Q: Where was Lewis Cine on Sunday?

Jul 27, 2022; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings safety Lewis Cine (6) performs a drill at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

A: Cine played special teams only — 15 snaps.

We were teased into believing Cine and the aforementioned Metellus would “split snaps,” but that was false. Cine evidently is not ready for replacement duty as a Vikings safety. Yes, that is concerning for a 1st-Round draft pick, so we shall see when Ed Donatell decides to acclimate Cine into the system.

This would’ve been the textbook opportunity to give Cine a look, with Harrison Smith out for the game. But the coaching staff preferred Metellus — and Metellus delivered.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).