New Orleans Saints are confident that Jon Vilma will return for Minnesota

Mike Triplett, The Times-Picayune

New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma was in Philadelphia on Monday for a second opinion on his groin injury, but the Saints are confident that he’ll be right back where he’s supposed to be — in the middle of their defense — come Sept. 9 when they play the Minnesota Vikings in the regular-season opener at the Superdome.

“Certainly, he’ll be out this week,” Coach Sean Payton said of New Orleans’ preseason finale at Tennessee on Thursday night. “But I think we’re optimistic that he’s going to be able to start up practice when we get going Sunday (for) next week. But we’re going to have to spend a lot of time here in the next six, seven days with treatment and all the things necessary.”

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