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Vikings: Everson Griffen leaves home peacefully, 'getting the care he needs'

The team confirmed on Twitter that Everson Griffen left his residence without incident following a mental health crisis that stretched on for hours.

EAGAN, Minn. — Officials with the Minnesota Vikings say Everson Griffen left his home peacefully and without incident and is "getting the care he needs," after an hours-long crisis where law enforcement and mental health professionals were called to his residence following concerning social media posts overnight.

"Law enforcement agencies have notified us Everson Griffen came out of his home without incident and is no getting the care he needs," team officials said in a statement. "We are thankful to the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office, the Carver County Sheriff's Office, the Minnetrista Police Department and the Orono Police Department for their quick response and dedication to ensuring the situation ended peacefully. Our focus remains on Everson's health and safety and providing the proper resources for him and his family."

Vikings GM Rick Spielman held a press conference Wednesday following the incident, confirming that Griffen is out of his home and is receiving care.

"Their family is our family," Spielman said. "And it's important at this moment that we respect the health, the safety and the well-being of everyone that is involved in this situation. I know he's receiving the care and the support he needs, along with his family."

Spielman said he went over to Griffen's residence Wednesday morning, but wouldn't comment on whether he was able to talk speak with him or where Griffen was receiving care.

"He's receiving the care that he needs," Spielman said when asked if Griffen was at a hospital.

Minnetrista police said in a press release that dispatchers received a call from the NFL veteran shortly after 3 a.m. saying someone was inside his home and he needed help. Griffen reportedly told the dispatcher that he fired a weapon but no one was injured. 

Credit: KARE
Law enforcement and mental health professionals continue to negotiate with Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen after an overnight incident at his home.

Police said law enforcement negotiators and psychologists from the Vikings were in ongoing communication with Griffen since 7 a.m., and shortly after 1:30 p.m., Griffen left his home without incident and was transported to an area health care facility.

Griffen's most recent struggles first came to light after a flurry of social media messages by people concerned about his well-being following those Instagram posts. Among the posts Griffen left on Instagram, all since deleted, was a video of him flashing a gun and talking about how he got that weapon and bullets to load in it. 

The Vikings confirmed earlier in the day that Griffen was receiving help following the incident: "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. Our only concern at this time is the safety and well-being of Everson and his family." 

At his weekly meeting with reporters Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said he would not elaborate on the situation, saying only that he was concerned for his player.

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

Griffen has publicly acknowledged his past struggles with mental health. some of which came to light during a high profile incident in September of 2018. On that occasion, Vikings personnel contacted authorities to conduct a welfare check following a disturbance Griffen was involved in at a downtown Minneapolis hotel. Eventually police responded to a report that Griffen had entered the home of a teammate without permission, then jumped into a truck with a stranger. Once officers arrived on the scene he began yelling about God and people trying to kill him. 

Griffen was hospitalized for mental health treatment, and later rejoined the club. 

RELATED: Police report details Everson Griffen incidents

If you are struggling with mental health, know that there is help out there. NAMI Minnesota is an affiliate of the national group that offers education, support and advocacy. Information on support groups, crisis services and other mental health resources can be found on NAMI Minnesota’s website