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Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer to undergo emergency eye surgery

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer to undergo emergency eye surgery

Zimmer's status for Thursday night's game against Dallas is obviously up in the air, at best, and if he were a player he may be optimistically listed as doubtful right now.

Minnesota Head Coach Mike Zimmer's emergency eye surgery Wednesday night will keep him out of Thursday's National Football League game against the Dallas Cowboys.

The Vikings are scheduled to play the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday and Zimmer's status is uncertain, according to a statement released by team general manager Rick Spielman.

Zimmer reportedly suffered a scratch to one eye during a game against the Chicago Bears on Halloween and underwent surgery for a torn retina the next day.

The Vikings said Spielman wouldn't be available for further comment until Thursday morning, but they have two former head coaches on staff in offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur (Cleveland) and offensive line coach Tony Sparano (Miami). If he is able to coach, it will be his first game against them as a head coach. Talking with him today and with the doctors, as much as he wants to be out there coaching tonight, it's in his best interest that we get this taken care of. He had been told that any delay in eye surgery could lead to blindness. The Vikings and Cowboys played past year in the preseason.

Interim offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur and offensive line coach Tony Sparano have both been National Football League head coaches, and Shurmur assumed offensive playcalling duties when Norv Turner resigned November 2, the same day Zimmer first discussed his eye surgery. He said it is too early to determine whether Zimmer could also miss future games as a result of the issue. Long-term concerns are a major factor, Spielman said, but Zimmer wanted to be on the sideline Thursday.

After a 5-0 start this season, the Minnesota Vikings have lost five of six games to leave themselves clinging to playoff hopes as the calendar moves to December.