Mental health professionals with Everson Griffen, Vikings DE refusing to come out of home

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  • Everson Griffen
    Everson Griffen
    American football player
  • Mike Zimmer
    Coach of American Football

Nov. 24—The Vikings said in a statement Wednesday morning that mental health professionals were with Everson Griffen after the defensive end posted a disturbing video early Wednesday morning on social media in which he was holding a gun at his home in Minnestrista. And the Minnestrista Public Safety Department issued a news release later in the morning saying that law enforcement officials were on hand and Griffen was refusing to come out of his residence.

"I know the team issued a statement on Everson Griffen and, really, the only thing I can comment on is about, for his health and well-being, and for his family," Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said at news conference Wednesday morning.

Shortly before Zimmer spoke, the Vikings issued a statement.

"Vikings representatives and the team's mental health professionals have been on-site at Everson Griffen's home since early this morning and are cooperating with law enforcement," it read. "Our only concern at this time is the safety and well-being of Everson and his family. We will have further comment at the appropriate time."

Griffen posted a video, which has since been deleted, of himself to his Instagram account in which he was holding an automatic pistol and said he was concerned for his safety.

The Minnestrista Public Safety Department issued a news release on Wednesday morning that said that, with the support of the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office, Carver County Sheriff's Office and the Orono Police, the Minnestrista Police Departed responded early in the morning to Griffen's home. The release said that shortly before 3 a.m. Griffen called 911 from his residence and said someone was inside his home and that he needed help from the police. The release said Griffen told the 911 dispatcher that he fired a weapon but nobody was injured.

The release said that when law enforcement agencies responded, they were unable to locate an intruder and that Griffen had refused to come out his home. The release said that law enforcement officials and psychologists from the Vikings had been in contact with Griffen since 7 a.m., and that law enforcement officials were confident that Griffen is alone inside the home.

Zimmer said he first learned about the situation "last night, late, earlier this morning, whenever it was."

"I addressed the team this morning, and talked to them," Zimmer said. "So we have a job to do."

The Vikings play Sunday at San Francisco. Zimmer declined to speculate on if Griffen will play.

"That's really not our concern right now," Zimmer said. "It's really about him."

Griffen, 33, initially played for the Vikings from 2010-19, making four Pro Bowls. He left the team as a free agent and played last season with Dallas and Detroit before re-signing with Minnesota in August. He has five sacks in the nine games he has played and Vikings coaches have said he's looked like his old self on the field.

"We're only concerned about his well-being," Zimmer said. "He's been with us for a long time. Good guy. Works hard."

Griffen missed one game this season with a concussion after a one-car accident near his west suburban home, and spent time away from the team in 2018 after an incident at a Minneapolis hotel raised concerns about his well-being.

Regardless of whether Griffen plays on Sunday, the Vikings will be short-handed on the defensive line. Zimmer said that starting defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson, who is unvaccinated, will not play against the 49ers after being placed Tuesday on the COVID-19 reserve list. The Vikings also will be without star defensive end Danielle Hunter, who is out for the season due to a torn pectoral muscle suffered Oct. 31, and nose tackle Michael Pierce, who is on injured reserve with an elbow injury and will miss his seventh straight game.

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