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with Sean Jensen and Don Seeholzer

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Smith expected to play

Coach Brad Childress said he will wait until all the facts are in before deciding on any possible team discipline for safety Dwight Smith, who was cited Thursday for misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

But the incident apparently won't keep him out of Monday night's game against Chicago.

"Right now, I anticipate him playing," Childress said after today's practice.

Smith participated in the practice session but wasn't in the locker room during the open media period.

Childress said he has spoken to Smith about the incident but declined to discuss any details.

"Those are conversations I would keep between Dwight and I," he said.

Childress likewise declined to speculate on any possible NFL discipline for Smith but said he doesn't think the incident will be a distraction for the team.

"I think we were able to put it behind us yesterday," he said. "We talked about it yesterday and put it where it needs to be and got ourselves back down to business."

Defensive tackle Pat Williams, who was with Smith at the time he was cited, said the players remain focused.

"Ain't nothing happened," Williams said. "That's just people trying to get in our locker room. We're not worried about that. Our focus is on the Chicago Bears and the game in front of us."

Childress said it was unfortunate that Williams was prominently mentioned in some TV reports of the incident, adding, "Pat was a sidebar to that. He had nothing to do with anything."

According to the police report, Smith admitted to having smoked marijuana, but Childress wouldn't speculate on how that might impact possible NFL discipline.

"Until the legal process runs its course, I wouldn't know," Childress said.

Guest speaker: Thee Vikings got a post-practice pep talk from former Wichita State coach Willie “Jeff” Jeffries, the father-in-law of tight ends coach Jimmie Johnson.

His message to the players?

"I just talked to them about life and living and their habits off the field," he said. "They had seven pro quarterbacks in a room and they were asking them what was the most important quarter in a game. … And Gino Torretta told them the fifth quarter is the most important quarter. That's what you do from the end of the game until Monday when you come back."


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